The Glaser Nobody Knows: A Pair of Frank Roth Exhibition Posters

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The Glaser Nobody Knows is a column featuring work by Milton Glaser that you may never have seen before. There are countless projects by the master, both produced and unpublished, that are unfamiliar even to design aficionados. All of the items in this column are part of The Milton Glaser Design Study Center and Archives at the School of Visual Arts, the chief repository of his legendary work.

Here’s a pair of exhibition posters from 1967-1968 for Glaser’s dear friend, abstract painter Frank Roth (1936-2019). Glaser pulled forms from Roth’s work for the central poster images. Roth, also a longtime former SVA instructor, passed away in 2019.

While looking at some contact sheets of the Push Pin office in the mid-1960s, I came across a few photos of Roth, including this one of him goofing on Glaser’s recent Dylan poster. Perhaps Roth was visiting to discuss his exhibition posters?

In 1964, Glaser designed the announcement for a Roth exhibition at the Borgenicht Gallery in New York, again working within Roth’s color vocabulary to bridge the gap between his friend’s work and his own.

Ten years later, in 1974, Milton designed a poster for a Frank Roth exhibition at Gimpel & Weitzenhoffer Gallery using similar color gradients, but this time in more subdued shades. 

Beth Kleber is the founding archivist of the Milton Glaser Design Study Center and Archives and the School of Visual Arts Archives in New York City. Kleber also curated the exhibition “Primary Sources: Documenting SVA and the New York Art World 1966–1985.” She lectures on design history and research, and assists students and researchers with inquiries on everything from Push Pin Studios to the activities of the renowned artists who have taught at SVA. Kleber has also worked in trade publishing and began her librarian and archivist career at New York Public Library. For more from the Glaser/SVA Archives, head to Instagram.