Alvin Eisenman, a graphic designer who founded Yale’s graduate program in graphic design — the first of its kind in the United States — died on Sept. 3 at his home on Martha’s Vineyard, The New York Times reported. He was 92.
Eisenman was a native of Dubois, Pa. and a graduate of Dartmouth College, where he received his bachelor’s degree in art. Following his graduation, he became a member of the Army Signal Corps, designing field manuals used during World War II. After his discharge and a stint as a designer for the McGraw-Hill Book Company, Eisenman moved to New Haven in 1950. There, he worked for the Yale University Press and spearheaded the establishment of Yale’s first graphic design graduate program in 1951.
For the next 40 years, Eisenman served as the program’s director. He recruited design experts, such as Alvin Lustig and Herbert Matter, to teach at the school. Numbered among Eisenman’s own students were “Doonesbury” cartoonist Garry Trudeau and Min Wang, a graphic designer for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
As a director and teacher, Eisenman was an advocate for holistic education and the use of new technology.
Eisenman is survived by his wife, Hope Greer, three children, seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.