In 2010, four graphic artists—Gail Anderson, Seymour Chwast, Edwin Gold and Paula Scher—contributed their own interpretations of the University of Baltimore's official slogan, Knowledge That Works.
Gail Anderson serves as creative director of design at SpotCo. From 1987 to early 2002, she served as senior art director at Rolling Stone. Anderson is co-author, with Steven Heller, of six design books including New Ornamental Type.
"Knowledge That Works is probably the smartest and most concise phrase imaginable for summing up the mission of the University of Baltimore. It's pure genius. I collaborated on the artwork with a friend, Darren Cox, and we wanted to take advantage of the boldness and simplicity of the University's statement. One hand holds 'Knowledge,' questioning in its graphic thought bubble, and the other, 'Works,' in a more declarative talk bubble. The design needed to be bold, and easy to spot at a distance—yet a bit playful—since although it's an an academic institution, we're still talking about college here. (And as old as I am, I do remember some fun being involved with all that higher learning....)"
Seymour Chwast is a founding partner of the celebrated Pushpin Group, of which he is the director. He has designed and illustrated more than 30 children's books and developed several typefaces. He published both The Push Pin Graphic, a magazine with subscribers all over the world, and a book of his work, The Left-Handed Designer.
"Just as an artist needs inspiration from a variety of sources for his/her creativity, institutions of higher learning need a diversity of students to enhance the education for each and every one of them."
Edwin Gold served as creative director for Baltimore's legendary Barton-Gillet Co., and during his career he received more than 400 major design awards. He is the author of numerous articles on design and the design profession as well as three books: Covers, covers, covers, The Business of Graphic Design and The New Business of Graphic Design, the latter named by Critique magazine as one of the 82 greatest books on design ever written. Gold is a professor and director of UB's M.F.A. in Integrated Design program, and runs the University's Ampersand Institute for Words & Images.
"The phrase 'Knowledge That Works' made me think about the fact that what 'works' for one person isn't the same for all people and, regardless of the intended goal, one must first have the ambition to achieve that goal. But as many have learned to their sorrow, ambition by itself is no guarantee of success. In order to get to the 'works' objective, one must be resourceful, creative, determined, accepting of all the help that is offered, and perhaps a little lucky. But, above all, one must be willing to look to the skies, not the ground."
In the 1970s, Paula Scher designed album covers for CBS Records and Atlantic Records before exploring art direction for magazines. She worked at Time Inc. before forming her own design firm, Koppel & Scher. Since 1991, she has served as a principal of the Pentagram design consultancy. Her writings include the book Make it Bigger and the Baseline magazine article "Opinionated Maps—Typographic Paintings."
"The mind is a well-oiled machine and knowledge is the fuel and lubricant that keeps it running. My design is a typographic metaphor for this notion."