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Saul Bass

Saul Bass

*  1920 New York
† 1996 Los Angeles

Saul Bass is a titan of 20th-century American graphic design. In 1936 Saul Bass was given a scholarship for the Art Students League in New York. Between 1944 and 1946 Saul Bass studied at Brooklyn College. Saul Bass freelanced as a commercial artist in New York for advertizing agencies and businesses, including Warner Bros. In 1946 Saul Bass went to Los Angeles, where he also worked as a graphic designer. In 1952 he started a practice of his own (from 1955 Saul Bass & Associates). In the 1950s Saul Bass designed the title sequence and posters for numerous Hollywood films, revolutionizing animated film graphics and film advertizing visuals. Saul Bass developed a simplified, symbolic language of design, which communicates all essential elements of a film in visual terms. Saul Bass also designed emblematic movie posters that packed a punch visually. The first commission Saul Bass received was in 1954 to design the title sequence of "Carmen Jones", directed by Otto Preminger. In 1955 that commission was followed by others for Robert Aldrich and the Billy Wilder film "The Seven Year Itch". In 1955 Saul Bass also designed the title sequence for Preminger's "The Man with the Golden Arm", which caused a sensation. Saul Bass became the leading Hollywood title-sequence designer. Film directors for whom Saul Bass worked include Alfred Hitchcock ("Vertigo", "North by Northwest", "Psycho"), from 1960, Stanley Kubrick ("Spartacus", "The Shining"), and, and, from 1990, Martin Scorsese ("Good Fellas", "Cape Fear", "The Age of Innocence", "Casino"). In 1993 Saul Bass designed the title sequence for Steven Spielberg's "Schindler's List". Between 1991 and 1996 Saul Bass also designed the posters for the Academy Awards presentation ceremony. Alongside his work for the Hollywood movie industry, Saul Bass also worked as a design consultant, creating the corporate image of numerous businesses such as United Airlines, AT&T, Minolta, Esso, BP, and Continental Airlines, whose company logos Bass also designed.