Announcing: The 2018 RI Design Hall of Fame honorees


Announcing: The 2018 RI Design Hall of Fame honorees

DESIGNxRI Announces RI Design Hall of Fame 2018 Inductees

Three designers inducted into Lifetime Achievement category and one Emerging Designer honored during special DESIGN WEEK RI celebration

The re-design of Cuisinart, the architecture of two America’s Cup winning yachts, leading at the pivot to digital publishing, and elevating culture through Billboard album designs and apparel – the 2018 RI Design Hall of Fame honorees showcase the breadth of design talent in Rhode Island. Today, DESIGNxRI announces three RI designers will be inducted into the Lifetime Achievement category of the RI Design Hall of Fame, and one Emerging Designer will be recognized, at a celebratory event on Thursday, September 20, 2018 from 6:00-9:00pm at the Foundry, 25 Holden Street, Providence.

Established in 2014 and presented by DESIGNxRI, the RI Design Hall of Fame recognizes proven leaders in the Rhode Island design community for their contributions to the industry on local, national and international levels. The 2018 honorees will be inducted at an event during DESIGN WEEK RI - which takes place in locations throughout the state from September 13-22, 2018.

The 2018 RI Design Hall of Fame inductees in the Lifetime Achievement category are:

· Marc Harrison (posthumously), industrial designer, pioneer of Universal Design and Human Factors

· David Pedrick, naval architect and marine engineer, principal Pedrick Yacht Designs

· Nancy Skolos, graphic designer, AIGA Medalist, AIGA Fellow

The 2018 Emerging Designer is:

· Joe Perez, creative director, graphics, blog curation for Kanye West, album / apparel designs

Inductions take place at the RI Design Hall of Fame Party - the 5th annual celebration of design in RI. The event host committee, co-chaired this year by Libby Slader and Steve Durkee, and DESIGNxRI staff, board and 2018 Hall of Fame committee celebrate and honor the inductees with presentations and remarks about the designers from the community.

Tickets to the RI Design Hall of Fame Awards Party are $75 in advance, $80 after September 16; and include heavy hors d’oeuvres and cash bar. Proceeds go to support the ongoing work of DESIGNxRI. Advance tickets and information can be found at the DESIGNxRI website.

The RI Design Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes those individuals with more than 25 years in their respective fields of design that have proven a true commitment to design in Rhode Island and have made a significant impact over the course of an extensive career.

The RI Design Hall of Fame Emerging Designer Award recognizes those individuals with less than 15 years of experience in their respective fields of design who show a talent and commitment that ensures they are the future design leaders of Rhode Island.

A panel of distinguished design professionals from New England reviewed potential candidates for induction and selected the 2018 RI Design Hall of Fame honorees. The jury included Judith Anderson of MassArt, Kyla Coburn of Kyla Coburn Design, Anthony Pannozzo of frog design, Gail Ravgiala of the former Design New England, Doug Reed of Reed Hilderbrand, and Kyle Sheffield of LDA Architects.

Information on the RI Design Hall of Fame can be found here.

Celebrating design and the Rhode Island design community, DESIGN WEEK RI is 10 days of happenings and activities that showcases the talent, innovation and impact of RI designers in talks, tours, luncheons, showcases, parties and more in multiple RI communities. The 5th annual event runs September 13-22, 2018. More details are available at

DESIGN WEEK RI is organized by DESIGNxRI. The event is made possible by the contributions of a diverse range of sponsors, including Ximedica, Platinum Sponsor, Signature Printing, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, Polaris MEP, IIDA New England, City of Providence, IOLabs, RISCA, (add)ventures, DiLeonardo International, KITE Architects and Bradford Soap.

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2018 RI Design Hall of Fame Inductees:

Photo from Hagley Museum and Library

Lifetime Achievement: Marc Harrison (posthumously)

Marc Harrison was born on July 1, 1936 in New York City. When he was eleven years old, Harrison suffered a severe brain injury due to a sledding accident in the Bronx, New York. As a result of the accident, he had to relearn basic functions such as walking and talking. It was because of this event and the years of rehabilitation that Harrison gained insight and inspiration for his future work as an industrial designer.

Harrison earned his BFA in industrial design at Pratt Institute in 1958, and his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1959. After a brief stint of freelance designing in New York City, Harrison took a position teaching at Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where he became instrumental in establishing the Division of Architecture and Design. He believed in the importance of organic thought and the inclusion of liberal arts courses to enhance students’ education, making them better designers.

The design philosophy of the time was that products should be designed for those of average shape, size, and ability. Though the intention was that these products would work for as many people as possible, the elderly and disabled found products designed by this method to be difficult to use. Harrison turned this philosophy on its head by deciding that products should be designed for people of all abilities. This was the pioneering of a philosophy that came to be known as Universal Design. Harrison incorporated this design philosophy into projects both at RISD and with his private consulting firm, Marc Harrison Associates.

Perhaps Harrison’s most famous design, which incorporated this philosophy, was the Cuisinart food processor. Taking the previous food processor, Harrison redesigned it with large and easily pressed buttons, large and easily grasped handles, and bold easily readable typeface. The new design was a success. By designing a food processor toward consumers with arthritis and/or poor eyesight, Harrison had created a product that was accessible to people of all abilities. For Cuisinart, that meant a food processor that was extremely popular with the general public.

Towards the end of his life, Harrison became involved with a RISD project, the “Universal Kitchen” based on concepts of Universal Design. The design study, undertaken by RISD students, analyzed every aspect of the kitchen in order to restructure it to meet the needs of varying abilities. Students documented each step in the process of cooking a meal in a conventional kitchen in order to develop a more efficient, time saving, and user-friendly model. Based on their findings, the students built a prototype “Universal Kitchen.” Harrison, who was one of the pioneers of the philosophy of Universal Design, was not able to see the final outcome of the project. On September 22, 1998 Marc Harrison died due to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). The final version of the “Universal Kitchen” was placed on exhibit in October 1998 at the Cooper-Hewitt design museum in New York City.

David Pedrick is a naval architect and marine engineer. He learned about naval architecture – the architecture of ships – and its application to yacht design soon after he started sailing at an early age. He shaped his love of sailing, eye for aesthetics and talent in science into his career as an industry-leading yacht designer.

Lifetime Achievement: David Pedrick

Sailing yachts are dynamic works of art – vehicles designed to harness the energy of the wind to overcome the resistance of the sea. Offshore and coastal sailing yachts – David’s core design work – are created to be pleasing to the eye and hand, but must also be engineered for ultimate safety in a hostile, storm-tossed operating environment.

The common goal that owners request of David is for their yachts to be beautiful, comfortable and fast. He and his design team have delivered these qualities in a wide range of yacht types, including winners of the America’s Cup, course record holders in the world’s major ocean races, exquisite custom cruising yachts, offshore sail training sloops, durable production sailboats and concours d’elegance classic yacht restorations.

Yacht designers are the integrators of all aesthetic and mechanical factors that go into making a yacht beautiful, agile and safe. Art and science are forged together through technical disciplines such as specialized structural engineering, computational fluid dynamics, and sailing performance prediction. David’s clients and colleagues value the intuitive design sense, technical rigor and attention to detail that go into each of his firm’s designs.

David is a 1970 graduate of Webb Institute of Naval Architecture with a B.S. in both naval architecture and marine engineering. He began his yacht design career under the mentorship of the renowned Olin Stephens, and established Pedrick Yacht Designs in Newport, RI in 1977. He is a Fellow in the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME). Past volunteer positions include: chairman of the International Technical Committee for ocean racing; board member and awards judge of the International Superyacht Society; a founding trustee and chairman of the International Yacht Restoration School (IYRS); and a corporation member of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).

Nancy Skolos works with her partner/husband Thomas Wedell to diminish the boundaries between graphic design and photography—creating collaged three-dimensional images influenced by modern painting, technology and architecture. The studio’s work came into its own during the 1980s with clients in the Boston area including Kloss Video Corporation, Boston Acoustics and Digital Equipment Corporation, where the team’s surreal photographic concepts combined with rational typographic structures gave voice to concepts such ’software.’ An Eye Magazine feature on the studio labeled their attitude “techno-cubist.”

Lifetime Achievement: Nancy Skolos

Skolos is an AIGA Medalist and AIGA Fellow and an elected member of AGI. The studio’s work has received numerous awards including gold, silver, and bronze prizes in the Warsaw, Lahti and Toyama Poster Biennials and Triennials and has been widely published and exhibited. Their posters are included in the graphic design collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, the Library of Congress, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Israel Museum, the Museum für Gestaltung, the National Museum in Poznan, and many others. They have authored two books: Type, Image, Message, published by Rockport in 2006, and Graphic Design Process, published by Laurence King in 2012.

Joe Perez is a freelance creative director & graphic artist based in Providence, Rhode Island. He attended Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA. From 2008-2010, he helped curated Kanye West’s two blogs: and Following this, Perez worked as the lead art director at Kanye West’s design studio, DONDA, from 2011-2016. His most notable work includes the Cruel Summer & Yeezus album covers.

Emerging Designer: Joe Perez

Perez also contributed to the award nominated “The Life of Pablo” merchandise where he developed product ideas and designed the interior of the NYC pop-up shop. He went on to found his own studio which crafted Nicki Minaj’s “The Pink Print” album cover which was later selected as one of the 50 greatest album covers of all time by Billboard Magazine.

In 2017, Perez released his first clothing collection entitled, “MASON”. Mason is currently stocked at 11 streetwear boutiques around the world.