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Selling Design: 27 Chicago Designers, 1936–1991

September 26, 2017–November 20, 2017 (weekdays only)
Ryerson and Burnham Libraries

From its inception in 1936, the 27 Chicago Designers group was committed to promoting the work of its members—typographers, illustrators, photographers, and designers. Their main mission was to share their work with clients in an annual publication, 27 Chicago Designers, for which each member contributed a four-page spread of recent design work. Beyond this, they supported each other through sharing client contacts, pursuing opportunities for working on projects collaboratively, and encouraging the recognition of commercial work as good design driven by professional expertise and aesthetic considerations. This exhibition, focusing on the group, charts the development of a collaborative or team-driven approach to design, the incorporation of modernist and experimental practices into American design culture, and the promotion of Chicago as a center for advanced commercial design and advertising.