I can’t help thinking that Paul Rand and Steve Jobs are cooking up a new identity for a heavenly company. In 1986 Jobs approached Rand to design the logo for his NeXT educational computer company. After obtaining permission from IBM, Jobs offered Rand a handsome sum to develop a logo for a product that was not yet public. The only thing Rand knew was that the mysterious NeXT computer was a black cube. With this scant yet meaningful intelligence, Rand developed a unique proposal book for the mark that walked the reader – Mr. Jobs – through the step by step conceptual process to the final, logical outcome.
I recall seeing a draft of the text and images prior to printing the limited-run booklet. I was floored by the simplicity and concision of the argument. Rand later told me that had no intention of making a formal presentation other than handing the booklet to Jobs. In fact, Rand waited in his hotel room for Jobs’ response.
Rand talked to me about the logo design in an interview for Design Dialogues (Allworth Press):
Below is a scan of the NeXT logo book (which Jobs loved so much, he reprinted it and gave it out as a keepsake/textbook). The pages are scanned as it appears in an original French-bound copy, although the color gray is not faithful to the original. Also, here is a 1993 video interview between Jobs and Alan Pottasch about Rand.
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