Travel Tour: Rochester Institute of Technology & Vignelli Center for Design Studies

November 18-19, 2016, Rochester, New York


Design Nation's 2016 custom trip to Rochester included a behind the scenes tour of the Vignelli Center for Design Studies and the Cary Graphic Design Archives at Rochester Institute of Technology, which moved it's campus from downtown Rochester to it's current suburban site in 1964-68. 


A custom walkthrough of RIT's impressive compilation of art and architecture was led by archivist Becky Simmons and included aspects of the campus-wide Dan Kiley landscape design, and structures by architects including Roche, Dinkeloo and Associates, Edward Larabee Barnes, Harry Weese and Associates, Hugh Stubbins and Associates, and Anderson, Beckwith and Haile. We explored public art and commissions throughout interior and exterior spaces, including pieces by Josef Albers, Harry Bertoia, Henry Moore, Shiela Hicks, Jose de Rivera, and many other examples from artists working in metals, fibers, ceramics, brick, and more.


Our visit included attendance to the retrospective exhibition of modernist designer of great impact, Norman Ives (1923-78) at the RIT University Galleries and the related panel discussion with a number of Ives' former colleagues and students.


Unique tours of area sites included Louis Kahn's First Unitarian Church, (1969) and the Temple Sinai (1967) by remarkable area architect, James Johnson, who recently passed in February 2016.