The Glaser Nobody Knows: A Milton Flyer For Dave Brubeck

Posted inGraphic Design

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 There are countless projects by the master, both produced and unpublished, that are unfamiliar even to design aficionados.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.

This charming flyer is for undated performances of the Dave Brubeck Quartet at the National Institute of Fine Arts in Mexico City.

Documentation for these concerts is scant, but it seems that the Brubeck Quartet performed at the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes May 12-14, 1964. The flyer says these performances took place in April, but 1964 looks right to me for dating this piece. Perhaps there were two sets of performances? Brubeck, the beloved jazz pianist and composer, performed with Paul Desmond, Eugene Wright, and Joe Morello between 1958 and 1968 in what some consider the “classic” configuration of the Brubeck Quartet.

The flyer is a lovely piece. Glaser’s trademark blotchy ink figures get a more refined treatment here, and as always, he somehow translates the ineffable qualities of music into art.

Glaser first designed an album cover for Dave Brubeck in 1960, early in his Push Pin days. Eighteen years later, in 1978, he would create a real showstopper for the Tomato Records release of The New Brubeck Quartet Live at Montreux.

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.