Categories
ART ARCHIVES CULTURE ARCHIVES From The Archives NYC ARCHIVES VOICE OF THE AGES

Milton Glaser at the Voice – Short Time, Big Impact

First appearing on the masthead as Vice-Chairman in the October 10, 1974, issue of the Voice, graphic designer Milton Glaser was determined to bring to newsprint some of the same graphic verve he and the Voice’s new chairman, Clay Felker, had brought to the glossy New York magazine the previous decade. While the Voice already had the street-wise photographer Fred W. McDarrah and multi-media cartoonist Jules Feiffer enlivening its pages, the editorial look of the paper was hamstrung by the limited color capacity of that era’s newspaper presses, which left the columns of dense type too often outshone by the ads — especially the full-page extravaganzas for music that was already on its way to becoming “classic rock.”

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1976
October 10, 1974 masthead

In fact, a 1967 psychedelic poster of Bob Dylan is one of Glaser’s most famous works.

[related_posts post_id_1=”719511″ /]

In late 1974, when Glaser cast his eye over the Voice, one of the first things he probably noticed was its highly informative, if staid, front and back pages, such as this “what’s on” back-page bulletin board from October 3, 1974, and the front page that appeared the following week. (All of the images in this article are raw scans taken from the Voice’s ongoing digital archive project.)

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1976
Back page of the October 3, 1974 issue, front page of the October 10, 1974 issue

Within a few months, Glaser had jettisoned his formal title in favor of the more descriptive “Design Director,” and the covers and back pages were the proof in the pudding.

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the March 3, 1975 issue, front page of the March 10, 1975 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
First masthead with Glaser as Design Director

In one notable case, Glaser not only did the design but also the cover illustration, depicting a famously devilish “man of wealth and taste.”

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the June 16, 1975 issue, front page of the June 23, 1975 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the July 21, 1975, issue; front page of the July 28, 1975, issue

Whether politicians, film stars, rock gods, or literary luminaries, Glaser made sure the Voice did “show” every bit as much as “tell.”

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the August 25, 1975 issue, front page of the September 1, 1975 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the November 3, 1975 issue, front page of the November 10, 1975 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the November 24, 1975 issue, front page of the December 1, 1975 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the March 22, 1976 issue, front page of the March 29, 1976 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the May 24, 1976 issue, front page of the May 31, 1976 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the July 12, 1976 issue, front page of the July 19, 1976 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the October 25 1976 issue, front page of the November 1, 1976 issue
Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the November 22, 1976 issue, front page of the November 29, 1976 issue

But all good things come to an end — as with so many sad tales, this one had something to do with Rupert Murdoch, a story we’ll get to another time — and Glaser’s last appearance on the Voice masthead was in January 1977. He exited with a bang, turning readers into viewers with some Hollywood squares on his penultimate back-page layout and a Robert Mapplethorpe portrait of a Village goddess on the cover of the January 17, 1977, issue. Not bad for a trip that lasted less than three years.

Article on Milton Glaser, design director of the Village Voice 1974-1977
Back page of the January 10, 1977 issue, front page of the January 17, 1977 issue

Milton Glaser: June 26, 1929 – June 26, 2020.