people, design, alumni
Writer: Hugh Hart
April 29, 2016

This edition of the 4x4 Gallery features recent work by alumni whose contributions as design innovators span half a century.

Yves Béhar

Since forming San Francisco-based Fuseproject in 1999, Swiss-born multidisciplinary designer Yves Béhar (BFA 91 Product Design) has produced triumphs in efficiency ranging from One Laptop per Child to the Herman Miller Sayl chair. Early this year, Béhar retooled Kodak’s classic 1965 Super 8 camera for 21st-century consumers. As he told Wired magazine, “This is not a retro design.” Instead he describes the camera, combining a physical film cartridge with an LCD screen and other digital accoutrements, as a high-end tool for amateur and professional filmmakers to practice their craft.

Yves Béhar partnered with Kodak to bring back the Super 8 camera as a film-digital hybrid, a new product headed to market in 2016. Image courtesy of Fuseproject While echoing the look and feel of the original Kodak Super 8 camera introduced in 1965, Yves Béhar’s design adds a modern sensibility and digital features including an LCD screen. Image courtesy of Fuseproject

NONdesigns

From Pasadena-based studio NONdesigns, ArtCenter instructors Scott Franklin (BS 05 Environmental Design) and Miao Miao focus on branded spaces that evoke indelible experiences. Their NON Linear lighting system features a collection of modules inlaid with LEDs that can be connected to create endless configurations and activated by the user’s smartphone. The design artfully addresses a question Miao posed to ArchiPanic: “How can we use one simple, well-rounded system to perform distinctly different expressions? It should have strong personality but be minimal enough to speak to a multitude of applications.”

The NON Linear lighting system from NONdesigns, by Miao Miao and Scott Franklin. Image courtesy of NONdesigns

Tyrone Drake

When Tyrone Drake (BFA 96 Graphic Design) remixed the Black Panthers’ 1966 “10-Point Platform” as a poster series, he drew inspiration from Miles Davis and Hard Bop Jazz, Russian Constructivism and his own childhood in Oakland, California. As a kid he received free breakfasts on his way to school through a Panthers’ community program. “When you grow up in a tough environment, one of two things happen,” Drake told KCRW-FM’s DnA blog. “You learn to survive or you fall under the pressure. Fortunately, this instinct guided me toward the idea that I want to do something creative in my life.”

Eldridge Cleaver and Angela Davis, part of the series “Hard Bop: Reflections and Interpretations of a Militant Manifesto” by Tyrone Drake. The series was presented at the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography in its inaugural exhibition in 2015. Image courtesy of the artist

John Frassanito

At 74, Jack Frassanito (BS 68 Product Design) remains active in Houston, Texas, where his firm, John Frassanito & Associates, supports NASA with design, engineering, animations and simulations of space missions. Even if he never lifted another finger, Frassanito’s legacy would be inescapable. In the late ’60s Frassanito worked on the interior for Skylab, America’s first space station. He co-invented the Datapoint 2200 personal computer introduced in 1970, and Datapoint Corporation went on to join the Fortune 500. He even helped invent the Sani-Fresh soap dispenser, originally for use in zero gravity.

Artist’s rendering of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) on a deep space mission. Courtesy of NASA, and John Frassanito and Associates. Credits: Bob Sauls and Ben Schweigeart