AIGA to honor four design visionaries this April

Ralph Caplan, Elaine Lustig Cohen, Armin Hofmann and Robert Vogele to receive the AIGA Medal

NEW YORK—February 8, 2012. AIGA, the professional association for design, is awarding four design visionaries with the highest honor of the design profession, the AIGA Medal: Ralph Caplan, Elaine Lustig Cohen, Armin Hofmann and Robert Vogele. Each will be presented with the award at Bright Lights: The AIGA Awards on April 19 in New York.

They join a legacy of distinguished design practitioners—including Steve Frykholm, Milton Glaser, John Maeda, Jennifer Morla, Paul Rand and Paula Scher—who have been awarded the AIGA Medal for setting standards of excellence over a lifetime of work or making significant contributions to innovation within the practice of design.

Ralph Caplan 75Ralph Caplan, influential author and design advocate, will be honored for turning his discerning eye, deftness with words and wonderful sense of humor toward defining design over half a century through writing, editing and teaching.

Elaine Lustig Cohen 75Elaine Lustig Cohen, pioneering graphic designer, artist and archivist, will be honored for her body of design work integrating European avant garde and modernist influences into a distinctly American, mid-century manner of typographic communication.

Armin Hoffman 75Armin Hofmann, legendary Swiss graphic designer and educator, will be honored for his immeasurable influence on generations of designers, teaching the power and elegance of simplicity and clarity through a timeless aesthetic, always informed by context.

Robert Vogele 75Robert Vogele, ground-breaking design entrepreneur and mentor, will be honored for his work as a business strategist and visionary who nurtured the creative potential of legions of Chicago designers, challenging all to think about design for the greater good.

Each will be presented with the prestigious AIGA Medal on April 19 at “Bright Lights: The AIGA Awards” in New York, a celebration that benefits the AIGA Design Archives, a public online collection of excellence in design, and Worldstudio AIGA Scholarships for underprivileged design and art students. Co-chaired by Su Mathews, senior partner of design at Lippincott, and DJ Stout, partner at Pentagram, “Bright Lights” brings together hundreds of professionals to celebrate design excellence.

“‘Bright Lights’ is going to be a memorable night of video premieres, cocktails and mingling to celebrate the legendary designers who shaped our profession,” said Mathews.

“Anyone who loves design is welcome, and tickets start at just $200. We hope to see a lot of new faces this year!” added Stout.

Information about “Bright Lights,” including slideshows of the four Medalists’ work, is available at

About the AIGA Medal

The AIGA Medal is awarded to individuals in recognition of their exceptional achievements, services or other contributions to the field of design and visual communication. Medals have been awarded since 1920 for contributions to the practice of design, teaching, writing or leadership of the profession in the United States. To learn more about this year’s Medalists and view a complete list of past recipients, visit

About AIGA

AIGA is the professional association for design, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing design as a professional craft, strategic tool and vital cultural force. Founded in 1914, AIGA today serves more than 22,000 members through 66 chapters and 200 student groups throughout the United States. AIGA stimulates thinking about design, demonstrates the value of design and empowers the success of designers at each stage of their careers. Learn more at