Michael Gericke studied graphic design at the University of Wisconsin. Prior to joining Pentagram in 1985, he worked for seven years at Communication Arts in Boulder, Colorado, where he produced many projects combining graphics with three-dimensional design.
Michael’s images and programs are known for their simplicity and clarity, and often portray the essential qualities of the object or topic he is representing. His work lies at the intersection of image making, communications and the built environment, and encompasses a wide-range of design areas, including visual identities, environmental graphics, posters, e-media, exhibitions, books, and advertising.
His identity work is widely seen and includes “One Laptop Per Child” – an initiative with MIT that provides low cost computers to underprivileged children around the world, PRI – Public Radio International; the Big Ten athletic/collegiate conference, the “AirTrain” that connects Manhattan to Newark and JFK International Airports, 21st Century Fox, the world’s largest sporting event – the 1994 FIFA World Cup; the US’s bid for the 2022 World Cup, CBS’s television coverage of the Winter Olympic Games, and the identity, events, signage, promotions and advertising for Rockefeller Center and its Rainbow Room, and Top of the Rock Observation Deck.
Michael’s cultural work includes the Smithsonian’s Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, the National Gallery of Art, the Guggenheim’s new museum in Abu Dhabi, Los Angeles’s Skirball Cultural Center and the 100th anniversary exhibition for the New York Public Library’s iconic 42nd Street Schwartzman Building.
Michael has collaborated with major international architectural teams on projects that include Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, the Marina Bay Sands integrated resort on Singapore’s inner harbor, Sheik Khalifa Medical City in Abu Dhabi, Toronto’s Lester Pearson International Airport, New York’s Hudson Yards and the Arizona Cardinals’ NFL stadium.
His educational projects include identity and orientation systems for MIT’s sprawling Cambridge Massachusetts campus and Cornell University’s new Cornell Tech district on Manhattan’s Roosevelt Island. Michael and his team created the graphic program for P.S. 62, New York City’s inaugural net-zero-energy school, one of the first of its kind in the United States – generating as much energy as it consumes.
He has been actively involved in the design efforts for Lower Manhattan since 2001, and he has overseen the design of major graphics programs for One World Trade Center – the tallest structure in the Western Hemisphere; the four new towers at the World Trade Center site designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merill, Richard Rogers, Fumihiko Maki and Big; and the PATH rail hub by Santiago Calatrava.
He has received hundreds of accolades from design associations and museums. His identity, poster and three-dimensional work appears regularly in international design exhibitions and is represented in the permanent collections of the Musée de la Poste in Paris, the Warsaw Poster Museum at Wilanów, the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe in Hamburg, the Neue Sammlung Museum in Munich, Japan’s Ogaki Museum, the Denver Art Museum and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.
Michael is the recipient of the American Institute of Architect’s Harry B. Rutkins award for his outstanding design and contributions to the design profession.
He has served on the Executive Committee of the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA), is a frequent lecturer at universities and professional organizations, and has taught identity design at the Cooper Union for Advancement of Science and Art in New York. Michael was elected to the Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI), and has served on the Advisory Council of the Center for Architecture, and the Board of Directors of the Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD).
Michael is the author of Graphic Life, published by Images Publishing, a 520-page monograph, with a preface by Moshe Safdie and an introduction by Pulitzer Prize winning architectural critic Paul Goldberger, of work that has been driven by a celebration of places, telling stories, and making symbols.