The Lyman Allyn Art Museum Presents:

Norman Ives: Constructions & Reconstructions

An exhibition from January 29 – April 24, 2022

The Lyman Allyn Art Museum presents Norman Ives: Constructions & Reconstructions, a major exhibition of his work as artist and designer. Ives was a pioneer in using type and letterforms as primary subjects for his designs. Ives’s work was continually evolving as he created paintings, collages, prints, bas-reliefs and murals. His innovations revolutionized the field of graphic design. 

After attending Wesleyan University, Ives was recruited for Yale’s first class in its bold new program led by Josef Albers, Alvin Lustig and Alvin Eisenman. Albers, who included letterforms in his teaching at Yale, became Ives’s preeminent mentor at Yale University’s School of Art.

Ives became a professor in the University’s Department of Graphic Design in 1973. Alvin Eisenman, the director of that department, had collected a stellar faculty who aided in reshaping the field of commercial art into the more demanding profession of graphic design. 

Alvin Eisenman, the director of that department, had collected a stellar faculty who aided in reshaping the field of commercial art into the more demanding profession of graphic design.

Norman Ives is a rarity in his success in multiple fields; artist, designer, publisher and teacher. There was an effortless transition from one to the other. Corporate symbols and murals were natural extensions of his love for letterforms in their whole or in fragments. 

His passion and his pleasure shine in both. This exhibition illustrates the wide range of his brilliance and diversity. 

The Norman S. Ives Foundation has produced a series of five prints from high-res scans of Ives’s original screen prints. All are archival pigment prints made on archival rag paper and stamped with the Foundation symbol. Surface and tonality closely match the original. Proceeds raised from the sale of prints are used by the Foundation for maintenance and conservation of the archive.