Emmet Byrne, the Walker Art Center
s senior graphic designer, has been promoted to Design Director succeeding Andrew Blauvelt who was recently appointed Chief of Communications and Audience Engagement. Byrne will provide creative leadership and strategic direction for the Walkers innovative brand identity in all areas of visual communication, including publications, exhibition graphics, special installations, institutional campaigns, and assorted ephemera as well as oversee its publishing program and design studio. Walker publications director Lisa Middag will co-direct the department with Byrne in the areas of administration and publishing.
Emmet brings a wealth of experience to this position, said Blauvelt. His keen aesthetic vision and conceptual rigor ensure that Walker design will continue its leadership position in the museum world.
Byrne is a graduate of North Carolina State Universitys College of Design. As senior graphic designer at the Walker he has been responsible for important award-winning publications, including catalogues accompanying the exhibitions Kara Walker: My Complement, My Enemy, My Oppressor, My Love and Tetsumi Kudo: Garden of Metamorphosis. His forthcoming book on photographer Alec Soth is published in conjunction with the artists first U.S. museum survey premiering at the Walker September 12, 2010January 2, 2011.
Byrne served as adjunct faculty at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design from 20042008 and is one of the minds and hands behind Task Newsletter and the identity work of the School of Visual Arts D-Crit program. His work has been featured in numerous publications, including the magazines Metropolis, I.D., Idea (Japan), Graphic (Korea), Adbusters, Windhover, Step, Abitare, Grafik, Creative Review, Artforum, and ArtAsiaPacific, as well as the books Design for Communication, Fully Booked, and Studio Culture. His work has been included in the exhibitions Forms of Inquiry: The Architecture of Critical Graphic Design (Architecture Association), The Live Archive of The Generational: Younger than Jesus (New Museum), Work Product: Designs from the Walker Art Center (Herron School of Art & Design), and De Zines (La Casa Encendida).
The Walkers in-house design studio--widely regarded as a leader in contemporary cultural branding --is the recipient of more than 100 awards and operates one of the longest running design fellowship programs in the U.S. Its commitment to design is reflected in the importance it has been accorded within the institution since its inception in 1940: a central voice in strategic planning, an essential component of its multidisciplinary programming, and a vital force in shaping its identity. In 2009 the Walker received the National Design Award for Corporate and Institutional Achievement from the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, the first non-profit organization to receive the prestigious honor.