Learning from Las Vegas, 2018
2, 11 x 17” posters, Neenah Paper
        This set of posters reinterprets the introductory paragraph in Learning From Las Vegas (1971) by Denise Scott Brown and Robert Venturi to make it more timeless and accessible. The first poster removes specific references to modernism, architecture, and Las Vegas, allowing the reader to fill in the blanks with their knowledge. The redacted references appear isolated in the second poster to emphasize their homogeneous and dated Western influences. The names of the authors are also separated. Even though Denise Scott Brown conceived the idea for the project, Robert Venturi was most often credited because he was a man. His name appears on the page with the redacted text as a criticism on the patriarchal nature of architecture.
Learning From Las Vegas is credited with launching the postmodernist movement by encouraging architects to look beyond modernist ideals and become inspired by the world around them. Las Vegas was the perfect setting for this research because it continually changes to appeal to tourists. Encouraging architects to set aside their judgment and to observe how people interact with their environment was radical at the time. This concept is still relevant today if we apply this thinking to communities and identities that have been traditionally overlooked by design. Can the field of graphic design serve a wider audience more honestly by setting aside its modernist aesthetics to study how people perceive graphics.
        By editing this canonical text and removing the specific Western references that make it feel both dated and exclusive, perhaps we can allow these ideas to have a longer lifespan. I don't believe we have to start from scratch to make graphic design more inclusive of new perspectives. Perhaps we can look backwards at the history of design make some edits to move the discipline forward without alienating anyone.