White background with black design. Black and white photograph of jazz musician Roscoe Mitchell occupies lower three-quarters of cover, set in black circle, with black concentric rings emanating outward. Upper one-quarter is white with black, blocky stylized lettering: Sound/ Roscoe/ Mitchell, and Sextet perpendicularly.
Laini Abernathy, Black Graphic Designer
Laini (Sylvia) Abernathy (who died in 2010) was an artist, designer, and activist. Cooper Hewitt is collecting album covers designed by this important designer, who contributed to the Black cultural scene in the late 1960s. Abernathy was part of the Black Arts Movement (BAM) in Chicago. BAM, a national movement founded after the assassination of...
Image features a black and white striped poster. On the center of the poster, the black stripes are covered in the green outline of a man playing the saxophone and on the white stripes, the red outline of a man playing the tuba. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Jazz Motions
To celebrate the opening of Saturated: The Allure and Science of Color (May 11, 2018-January 13, 2019), Object of the Day this month will feature colorful objects from the exhibition. Niklaus Troxler (Swiss, b. 1947) designed this boldly colored poster in 2005 for the annual Willisau Jazz Festival, an event he co-founded in 1975.  Here, Troxler engages...
Image of Esperanza Spalding in Conversation with Caitlin Condell, Oct 2, 2017
Design Talk | Improvisation and Transformation: An Evening with Esperanza Spalding
A conversation with musician and four-time Grammy Award–winner Esperanza Spalding.
Image of Poster, Freddy Johnson and His Harlemites, 1934 by Charles Delaunay
Harlem in the Jazz Age
Ryan Maloney, Directory of Education and Programming at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, connects the themes found in The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s with the musical culture in Harlem at the time.
Image of George Gershwin at piano
Fascinating Rhythms: Music of the Jazz Age
James Stalzman of the Manhattan School of Music discusses the musical pieces he paired with particular objects from The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s.
“It screeched, it bellowed… Raucous? Yes. Crude? Undoubtedly.”
In celebration of Jazz Appreciation Month, Elizabeth Broman discusses selections from the Smithsonian Design Library's collection of jazz sheet music.
A Rhythmic Portrait
In 2002, Chinese graphic designer Jianping He founded Hesign, a Berlin-based design studio.  He studied both in China and in Germany, and his designs reflect the experiences of his training in both countries. In restrained color palettes, he executes bold poster designs with exacting precision, often incorporating both Chinese characters and Roman letters. To promote an exhibition...
A Jazzy Print
Between 1925 and 1927, the Stehli Silks Corporation produced the Americana Prints, a series of nearly 100 artist-designed dress silks for the modern woman. American artists, designers, celebrities and cartoonists were selected to create the prints, among them photographer Edward Steichen and cartoonist John Held Jr., who produced the piece featured here. Taken together, the...
Dark violet poster featuring text in blue, oragne, and yellow. Text creates the outline of a man's silhouette. Text reads: "A TRIBUTE TO THE MUSIC OF THELONIOUS MONK. Freitag 5. September '86, 20.30 Uhr, Mohren. Jon Hendricks, George Adams, Bill Hardman, Walter Davis Jun., Stafford James, and Cliff Barbaro."
Blue Concert Posters
This poster, for a tribute concert to the music of Thelonious Monk at the Jazz Festival Willisau, can be categorized a few ways. It’s one of the 17 posters we have by Swiss graphic designer Niklaus Troxler (a Willisau native and jazz lover who first organized the jazz festival in 1975). It’s also one of the...