Tobias Frere-Jones has been named this year’s Wm. O. Steinmetz ’50 Designer-in-Residence at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). The two-day residency occurs Oct. 29 and 30, with a free public lecture at 7 pm October 29 in MICA’s Falvey Hall, Brown Center. While on MICA’s campus, Frere-Jones will conduct a type design workshop for graduate and undergraduate students.
Over 25 years, Frere-Jones has established himself as one of the world’s leading typeface designers, creating some of the most widely used typefaces, including Interstate, Poynter Oldstyle, Whitney, Gotham, Surveyor, Tungsten and Retina. Tobias received a BFA in Graphic Design from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in 1992. He joined the faculty of the Yale University School of Art in 1996, and has lectured throughout the United States, Europe and Australia. His work is in the permanent collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He has received the Gerrit Noordzij Prijs, the AIGA Medal, and most recently Cooper Hewitt’s 2019 National Design Award for Communication Design, recognizing his contributions to typographic design, writing and education.
Named after the late MICA alumnus, faculty member and longtime trustee William Steinmetz (1927 – 2016), the Wm. O. Steinmetz ’50 Designer-in-Residence program was established in 2009 to enhance MICA’s design culture by bringing outstanding practitioners to campus to share their valuable experiences and perspectives with students, faculty and the public. The residency was created thanks to an endowment fund established by Steinmetz’s spouse, Betty Cooke ‘46 as well as gifts from others in honor of him.
Past Steinmetz Residency recipients include Lisa Strausfeld, Richard Niessen, Chip Kidd, Karin Fong, Cameron Sinclair and, most recently, Conflict Kitchen co-founders Jon Rubin, Dawn Weleski and Zachary Lieberman.