Milton Glaser, co-founder of New York Magazine and famous graphic designer behind the “I ♥ NY” logo, died, according to the magazine.
Glaser died Friday on his 91st birthday, says the magazine’s obituary. His wife, Shirley Glaser, told The New York Times that the cause of death was a stroke and that he also suffered from kidney failure. She could not immediately be reached for comment on CNN.
“On behalf of the New York family, my thoughts are with Milton’s loved ones today, especially his wife Shirley. We have lost a brilliant designer and an excellent New Yorker,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a statement to the CNN.
Born in 1929, Glaser started design at the Cooper Union in New York to advance science and art. He then launched Push Pin Studios in 1954 with several former classmates, who “exerted a powerful influence in the direction of global graphic design,” according to the Glaser website.
In 1968, Glaser founded New York Magazine with Clay Felker and served as president and design director until 1977.
Glaser is perhaps best known for designing the iconic and ubiquitous “I ♥ NY” logo. It was created in 1977 to promote tourism in the state of New York, amid a series of crimes in the city, infamous blackouts and widespread economic difficulties.
His conceptual sketch, hastily scrawled in red on a paper envelope, is part of the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Before that, Glaser won praise for a psychedelic poster from the 60’s Bob Dylan’s “Greatest Hits” album.
In addition to his best known projects, Glaser’s work is featured in permanent collections at MoMA, the Israel Museum in Jerusalem and the National Archive and Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC, among others.
Glaser was the only graphic artist to have individual presentations at the Center Georges Pompidou in Paris and at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, according to the National Endowment of the Arts.
He received the National Medal of the Arts in 2009.
More recent projects included the Brooklyn Brewery label and the “Mad Men” season 7 poster.
“Milton Glaser’s work is everywhere: in logos in his supermarket, on posters that you see on the sidewalk and in New York’s identity,” the magazine’s editors wrote in a statement. “Not to mention the screens and the mailbox, the cover logo he designed for the first issue of New York Magazine: it is so durable that we still use it 52 years later. Much of our magazine’s DNA encodes the visual ideas of Milton. New York’s intelligence and sensitivity. We are sorry to hear that he is gone – but what a great life he lived. “