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William Drenttel is a graphic designer, publisher and design leader.
Since 1997, William Drenttel has worked in partnership with Jessica Helfand at Winterhouse, a design consultancy focusing on editorial development and online media; cultural and educational institutions; and social innovation initiatives. Clients include Archives of American Art, Errol Morris, New England Journal of Medicine,The New Yorker, NYU Institute for the Humanities, NYU School of Journalism, Harvard Law Review, Poetry Foundation, University of Chicago Press, Yale School of Forestry, and the National Design Awards. Drenttel is currently the design director of Teach For All, an international organization supporting educational innovation and inspired by Teach For America.
In 2002, Drenttel co-founded Design Observer, a site of design news and cultural criticism: today, the site is a leading design publication with over a million site visits a month. He is also co-editor of Below the Fold:, a journal of visual culture published by Winterhouse; the founder of the Polling Place Photo Project, an online election documentation project run in collaboration with AIGA and The New York Times; the co-founder of the Winterhouse Writing Awards, a $10,000 prize for innovation in design writing; and a Senior Faculty Fellow at the Yale School of Management teaching design and innovation. In 2009-2010, Winterhouse Institute received significant funding from the Rockefeller Foundation to act as catalyst, coordinator and champion of an initiative in the public sphere to develop collective action and collaboration for social impact across the design industries.
Drenttel is president emeritus of the American Institute of Graphic Arts, a trustee of the Susan Sontag Foundation, and a fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities at NYU. He is the co-editor of the Looking Closer anthologies, the widely taught textbook series of critical design writings. He is a previous board member of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Lingua Franca and the Poetry Society of America, and has lectured at the Library of Congress, Walker Art Center, Annenberg Public Policy Center, Cranbrook Academy of Art, San Francisco Museum of Contemporary Art, and two AIGA national biennial conferences, among many others. Drenttel has recently lectured internationally in England, Slovenia, Czech Republic and Portugal.
From 1985 1997, Drenttel was the president of Drenttel Doyle Partners. One of the leading design firms in America, the firm won over 300 design awards. Among its accomplishments, Drenttel Doyle Partners changed magazine design with its design of Spy Magazine; put Martha Stewart in K-Mart; launched cash machines for Citibank; designed the identity for the World Financial Center; over a ten year period, publicized the World Financial Center Arts & Events Program, the largest free public program in New York City; repositioned the Cooper-Hewitt Museum as the National Design Museum; and created graphic identity programs for three national educational institutions, Teach for America, Edison Project and Princeton University. Previously, from 1977 - 1985, Drenttel was a senior vice president at Saatchi & Saatchi, where he managed accounts for Procter & Gamble and AT&T, and was responsible for launching Pampers in Italy and cellular telephones in America.
As a publisher, Drenttel has created books under the Winterhouse imprint for Yale University Press, University of Chicago Press and Princeton Architectural Press. He has published literary works (Susan Sontag, Thomas Bernhard, Paul Celan); bibliographic works (catalogues for the Grolier Club); public policy (National Security Strategy of the U.S.); history (Kafka and film, and the 1943 destruction of Hamburg); and art and design history (Siri Hustvedt, Michael Bierut and Jessica Helfand). The most recent Winterhouse book is Scrapbooks: An American History by Jessica Helfand, published by Yale University Press in November 2008.
Drenttel received a B.A. from Princeton University in 1977 with an Independent Concentration in Film and European Cultural Studies. He lives in Falls Village, Connecticut with his wife, Jessica Helfand, and their two children, Malcolm and Fiona.
DRENTTEL TALKS AT MAYO CLINIC Bill Drenttel was co-program chair of the Mayo Clinic's Transform Conference on design innovation in healthcare, September 11-13, 2011. An abstract of his keynote talk, was published by MD News, a online journal for doctors. Watch the video of his talk at Mayo Clinic Transform.
DESIGN IS NOT
Winterhouse's affordable housing initiative with Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation was featured in Sappi's 2010 "Ideas That Matter" book of grant recipients and their projects.
HELFAND ON MATTER
Jessica Helfand introduced the April 29, 2011 screening of Reto Caduff's documentary, The Visual Language of Herbert Matter, at The New York School of Interior Design.
DESIGNERS AND BOOKS
Jessica Helfand discusses some of her favorite books, and none of them have anything to do with design. (Photo of Winterhouse Library by Greg Hanrahan.)
FILM ABOUT WINTERHOUSE
Andrew Sloat directed this short film about Winterhouse for the Art Directors Club Hall of Fame. Music by Roland Satterwhite.
ART 001 AT YALE
Now in its second year, Jessica Helfand's freshman seminar unites the intellectual content of an academic seminar with the creativity of an art class.
DESIGN OBSERVER AWARD NOMINATION
We are pleased to announce that Design Observer is a finalist for the 2010 Online Journalism Awards in the Independent Specialty Site Journalism category.
SOUTH AFRICA + WINTERHOUSE An interview with William Drenttel from Design Indaba 2009 appeared in Design> Magazine No.17. Full interview appears here.
REFLECTIONS ON PRINTMAKING Jessica Helfand documents her work as an artist-in-residence at The Center for Contemporary Printmaking on Felt & Wire.
WINTERHOUSE IN THE ADC HALL OF FAME William Drenttel and Jessica Helfand have been named Art Directors Club Hall of Fame laureates for 2010. Other winners
include: art director Fabien Baron; typographer Matthew Carter; the
late illustrator Philip Hays; photographer Brigitte Lacombe; design
legend George Nelson; wunderkind Christoph Niemann; and Wieden+Kennedy
cofounder Dan Wieden. Honorees were inducted at a black-tie benefit dinner on November 4th in New York. Post by Michael Bierut.
PRINTMAKING WALK & TALK Jessica Helfand, Artist-in-Residence at the Center of Contemporary Printmaking in Norwalk, Connecticut, will be discussing her work during an open studio there next Thursday, July 22, at 12 noon.
WINTERHOUSE SUPPORTS LIVING PRINCIPLES We are pleased to announce that Winterhouse Institute is a new partner supporting The Living Principles site launched by AIGA to encourage sustainability and creative action for collective good.
CLASS OF 2010 PORTRAITS Jessica Helfand’s paintings of her fellow American Academy of Rome Fellows are posted on the Academy's Society of Fellows blog.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU Winterhouse was asked by The New York Times to reimagine a Tony Award that didn't look like a gong. Our solution ran in the Sunday Arts & Leisure section, with others, and it kicks-off the online slideshow. The story was also picked up by mediabistro's UnBeige.
ROMAN HOLIDAY II Jessica Helfand examines her latest artistic direction on Felt & Wire: Portraiture; representational and abstract.
ROMAN HOLIDAY Jessica Helfand contemplates her creative process and need to draw and paint daily while in studio at the American Academy in Rome.
NASA LOGO REDESIGN Jessica Helfand was one of four graphic designers invited by The Boston Globe to reconsider the NASA logo. Read about her entry here.
TALKS IN INDIA AND SOUTH AFRICA Jessica and William were designers-in-residence at the National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad India in January 2010, and gave a lecture before the community there: "Post-Client, Post-Ulm: The Winterhouse Lecture." In February, Bill gave a main stage presentation on "Post-Client Socially-Inspired Design" at Design Indaba, the yearly conference in Cape Town, South Africa.
WINTERHOUSE WORLD TOUR Jessica and William packed up the kids to circle the globe for six months, including a stop at the small village of Shahpura, where a 400-year-old fort was sold for one rupee (twice!) Read more on the dedicated blog.
ASPEN DESIGN SUMMIT Winterhouse joined forces with AIGA to stage the Aspen Design Summit in November 2009 with 65 invited participants and 6 NGOs. After a year of planning, William unveiled projects to galvanize design communities to engage in promoting social change. Funded by Rockefeller Foundation.
HARVARD LAW REVIEW Winterhouse's redesign for the Harvard Law Review website launched to coincide with the publication of their November 2009 issue. The site incorporates 12 spot illustrations, in rotation, from three commissioned artists: Heather Gatley, Ian Dingman, and Matthew Cook.
DESIGNISM 4.0 AND WALK THE WALK On November 18, William Drenttel joins Paula Scher and TOMS Shoes' Blake Mycoskie for Designism 4.0, hosted by the New York Art Director's Club.Â In conjunction with the event, ADC is sponsoring the Walk the Walk online fundraising auction. The ebay auction featuresÂ TOMS Shoes that have been re-envisioned by a number of designers, including Jessica Helfand, who participated in the first Designism forum in 2006.
JESSICA HELFAND HONORED
Jessica Helfand was the recipient of the D&D 2009 Stars of Design Award for Graphic Design. Other winners included Hunt Slonem, for Art; Thomas Britt, Lifetime Achievement; Ellie Cullman, for Interior Design, Michael Van Valkenburgh, Landscape Design; Robert Lee Morris, Jewelry Design; and Scott Frances, Photography Design.
AIGA WINTERHOUSE WRITING AWARDS 2009
Design writing and criticismÂ award winners announced. Congratulations toÂ Sean Keller, recipient of the $10,000 Writing Award;, and to student award winnersÂ Chappell Ellison and Steven Lauritano.
DESIGN MATTERS AUDIO INTERVIEW
New podcast from Design Matters with Debbie Millman features William Drenttel and Julie Lasky discussing the new Design Observer, Change Observer, the state of online media, and the end of print.
PROJECT M AT WINTERHOUSE ANNOUNCES PIZZA FARM
A free food event on Saturday, August 29 in Canaan, CT that unites local farmers with local community. Learn more.
MARTHA LOVES SCRAPBOOKS Jessica Helfand's Scrapbooks is cited in the August 2009 issue of Martha Stewart Living in the "Books We Love" section. Also, new interview here.
JUDGING THE MOHAWK 10 SHOW Jessica Helfand and William Drenttel joined Alice Chung and Ellen Lupton in Lake
George, NY, to judge the annual competition for Mohawk Fine Papers. Facebook users can go behind the scenes here.
BOOKSIGNING AND CHAT IN CONNECTICUT
Jessica Helfand will be at the Gunn Historical Museum in Washington, CT, Saturday June 13 at 2:00 p.m. in support of their exhibit, The Keepers of History: Scrapbooks and Albums.
MOLESKINE/I.D. EXHIBIT COMES TO NEW YORK
May 2009, Jessica Helfand walks onlookers through her piece for "A Week In Your Life". The single-night special event at the Art Directors Club also included works by Michael Graves, Marian Bantjes, James Biber and nine other artists.
PROJECT M COMES TO WINTERHOUSE
A collaborative project of young designers for social change in a rural environment. August 15-30, 2009. Learn more and apply by June 15.
SCRAPBOOKS AND SELFWORKS
Jessica Helfand and Rebecca Johnson Melvin discuss scrapbooks at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, April 28, 2009. Watch the video
A WEEK IN HER LIFE
Moleskine and I.D. Magazine partnered to create "A Week In Your Life" for the 2009 International Week of Design in Milan. Jessica Helfand was one of thirteen designers to participate.
ROME PRIZE FOR WINTERHOUSE
Bill Drenttel and Jesssica Helfand have been named Henry Wolf Residents in Graphic Design for Spring 2010 at the American Academy in Rome.
TRANSFORMING MODELS FOR SOCIAL CHANGE
Bill Drenttel delivered keynote address at
"Failed Design" Symposium, Bard Graduate Center, April 24, 2009.
AWARDS FOR WINTERHOUSE
STEP Inside Design, April 2009, recognizes two Winterhouse projects in their Design 100 Annual: Poetry Magazine and Archives of American Art Journal
PITTSBURGH LECTURE Poster for William Drenttel's lecture on Tuesday, April 21 2009, 7:00pm at The Andy Warhol Museum.
POLLING PLACE PHOTO PROJECT EXHIBITION
Curated by William Drenttel & Jessica Helfand. Films by Andrew Sloat. On view March 6-18, 2009 at Silpe Gallery, Taub Hall, University of Hartford. Opening: Friday March 6, 5-8pm. Information here.
ANDREW SLOAT'S POLLING PLACE FILM
WINTERHOUSE LECTURE AT PRINCETON
William Drenttel & Jessica Helfand are lecturing on design for social change at Better Design Conference, Princeton, February 27, 2009. Video here.
SCRAPBOOKS "BEST GIFT BOOK"
Jessica Helfand's Scrapbooks is named the best gift book of the year by The New York Times. More Scrapbooks press here.
DESIGN OB5ERVER PARTY
Celebrating forty million site visits since its inception in October, 2003, Design Observer celebrates its fifth birthday at Elements in New York City.
DESIGN OBSERVER TEES
Now available through Artefacture.
DWELL GRAPHIC DESIGN 101
Jessica Helfand and William Drenttel write and compile the "Graphic Design 101" feature for the Dec 08/Jan 09 issue of Dwell.
TYPE DIRECTORS CLUB
Poster for Money: The Numbers Project, a Type Directors Club initiative. Posters will be auctioned in February, with proceeds going to the TDC Scholarship Fund. See it here, or in the archive.
SPEAKING OF ART
Book celebrating the Smithsonian Archives of American Art Oral History Collection, co-published by Winterhouse Editions. See cover and spreads in the archive.
STEP PROFILE Sean Adams interviews Jessica Helfand & William Drenttel in the Sept/Oct 2008 issue of Step Inside Design.
William Drenttel presents work from Winterhouse at the 23rd International Biennial of Graphic Design Brno 2008 in the Czech Republic.
An interview with Jessica Helfand about her new book, "Scrapbooks: An American History." Filmed in New York City, October, 2008 by Kathy Brew and Roberto Guerra.
NEW YORK TIMES OP-ED Stunt Book, 1920 tells the story of one woman's summertime adventure in California. Part of Jessica Helfand's ongoing project on American scrapbooks.
CONTENTS BOOK ON EXHIBIT
Contents book selected for inclusion in Gateways, an international exhibition of contemporary book covers in Portugal.
SCRAPBOOKS: POP JOHNSON
Jessica Helfand on the story of Francis "Pop" Johnson, whose scrapbook went along with him to Europe and onto Asia, where he charted his many wartime adventures.
WINTERHOUSE WRITING AWARDS 2008
Deadline for the AIGA Winterhouse Writing Awards is 6/2. These awards include a $10,000 writing award and a $1,000 student award. This year's jury includes Jessica Helfand (chair); Michael Bierut, partner at Pentagram and a founder of Design Observer; Kevin Lippert, publisher of Princeton Architectural Press; and Judith Thurman, writer and contributing editor, The New Yorker.
YALE ENVIRONMENT 360 ONLINE
Winterhouse-designed Yale e360, a new blog featuring the best in environmental opinion, analysis, reporting, and debate, launches on June 3.
THOUGHTS ON DEMOCRACY Poster designed for the Wolfsonian's "Thoughts on Democracy" exhibition opening July 4. Inspired by Norman Rockwell's "Four Freedoms" posters.
YALE TO PUBLISH SCRAPBOOK HISTORY
Yale University Press will publish Jessica Helfand's new book Scrapbooks: An American History in October 2008.
SMITHSONIAN ARCHIVES OF AMERICAN ART
"Landscape," the second issue since Winterhouse's redesign of the Smithsonian Archives of American Art Journal, is released.
MAPLE SYRUP 2007
A long afternoon condensed into a short film produced on the occasion of bottling Winterhouse Maple Syrup vintage 2007.
William Drenttel & Jessica Helfand lecture on April 9 as part of ESAD's Personal Views, "a unique series of conferences that brings together an unparalleled group of designers, writers and educators."
Design Observer publishes The Next Page: Thirty Tables of Contents. See the full book online here. Or add your own favorite tables of contents to the book's flickr group.
CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF COMMUNITY SUPPORT
For the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation's 20th anniversary, a collaboration with John Dolan results in a photographic portrait of the region, distributed to 15,000 local residents. Download PDF.
SUSTAINABILITY POSTERS ADDED TO COOPER-HEWITT PERMANENT COLLECTION. Posters by Marian Bantjes, Christoph Niemann and Paula Scher, which were commissioned by Winterhouse last year for Stora Enso sustainability initiative, have been accepted into the permanent collection of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.
WINTERHOUSE IN STEP 100
Winterhouse Maple Syrup and the Contents book are included in Step Inside Design's 2008 Step 100.
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF UNIVERSITY PRESSES
Jessica Helfand and William Drenttel are the judges of this year's AAUP covers competition.
WINTERHOUSE PARTNERS WITH NY TIMES
The Polling Place Photo Project, founded by Winterhouse in 2006, relaunches January 4th for the 2008 elections in partnership with The New York Times and AIGA.
FRED SMEIJERS FEATURES NEJM
Five years after the Winterhouse/Pentagram redesign of the New England Journal of Medicine, Fred Smeijers features his NEJM-customized Quadraat on his homepage.
JESSICA HELFAND ON STEFAN SAGMEISTER
Jessica is quoted in the Inernational Herald Tribune on Stefan Sagmeister's new exhibition and book.
TEACH FOR AMERICA
Winterhouse teams with Teach for America to manage its new international initiative; Teach for All. William Drenttel will serve as design director of Teach for All during its first year.
YALE SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT
William Drenttel and Michael Bierut teach the first design class at Yale School of Management beginning in January 2008. Designers Designing Design, MGT833.
Helfand and Drenttel are on the jury for the 2007 Slovenia Design Biennial. An exhibition featuring ten years of Winterhouse work is on view at the National Gallery in Ljubljana. Interview (in Slovene, sorry) here.
NEXT: AIGA DESIGN CONFERENCE 2007
In collaboration with Cavan Huang, Winterhouse designed the opening animation and speaker interstitials for the 2007 AIGA National Design Conference. See them all at our YouTube channel.
WINNERS Contents book and Winterhouse maple syrup packaging are among the winners of this year's Step 100. The Stora Enso sustainability poster series and Below the Fold: are runners up.
MAKE IT NEWS New poster for the Poetry Foundation and the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.
POETRY FOUNDATION WINS WEBBY
Poetryfoundation.org wins 2007 Webby for Best Association Site. CNet reports that the "feature that no doubt helped push the site to its Webby glory is the Poetry Tool, which allows users to find poems by category, occasion, title, first line or glossary term..."
RECENT AWARDS Below the Fold: and Poetry Magazine are chosen as winners in the STEP 2007 Design 100. Below the Fold: is also featured in April's issue of Creative Review.
THE NEW YORKER WEBSITE REDESIGN
Winterhouse is pleased to announce that its redesign of The New Yorker website has launched. The new design was executed by The New Yorker and Condé Nast’s MagNet team, and built with the help of Avenue A-Razorfish.
WINTERHOUSE WRITING AWARDS 2007
Deadline for the AIGA Winterhouse Writing Awards is 5/31. Jury includes Allison Arieff, former editor of Dwell and designer-in-residence at IDEO; William Drenttel, chair; Melissa Harris, editor of Aperture; and Bruce Sterling, science fiction novelist and blogger at Wired.
Jessica Helfand and William Drenttel lecture at the Aperture Foundation in New York and, for the AIGA New Orleans chapter, at Tulane University. They will also give the closing keynote address at AIGA's Schools of Thoughts 3 Conference.
NEW BOOK BY MICHAEL BIERUT
Winterhouse Editions is pleased to announce the publication of Forty Posters for the School of Architecture by Michael Bierut.
WINTERHOUSE IS GRANTED U.S. PATENT 7,124,360
Winterhouse receives a rare design patent for TatamiNet, "a method and system for computer screen layout based on the recombinant geometric modular structure and proportions of the traditional Japanese tatami mat."
CITIZENS' STAMP ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Jessica Helfand is appointed to the U.S. Postal Service's Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee, the group responsible for evaluating the subjects and designs for all U.S. postage stamps. More.
Jessica Helfand joins Kurt Andersen, James Victore, George Lois, Milton Glaser, Steve Heller, Brian Collins, and Tony Hendra, in the Designism panel discussion sponsored by the Art Director's Club. Podcast here. Reviews here, here and here.
WILLIAM SAFIRE ON MOONBATS
William Safire's "On Language" column in The New York Times Magazine features custom lettering by Fiona Drenttel, (very) junior designer at Winterhouse.
MAIRA KALMAN MISSPELLS POETRY
Poetry Magazine's summer issue features cover art by Maira Kalman. The name of the magazine is changed for this issue.
WALTER CRONKITE FILM TITLES FOR PBS
Don Hewitt, Molly Ivins and David Frost are just a few of the veteran journalists who share their views of the man they call the most trusted man in America: Walter Cronkite. Catherine Tatge directs this 90-minute documentary on Cronkite's prolific life and work, with titles designed by Jessica Helfand and Cavan Huang. Produced for American Masters.
SCRAPBOOKING AT THE SMITHSONIAN
Jessica Helfand discusses “Historical Aesthetics and Design of Scrapbooks” at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.
RECENT AWARDS Idea magazine, No. 316; Geoff Halber in Young Guns 5 2006. Additional awards from the AIGA, Art Director's Club, Type Director's Club and ID Magazine for Below the Fold. Susan Sontag's Literature is Freedom is featured in 2006 STEP 100.
Jessica Helfand and William Drenttel are interviewed on Design Matters with Debbie Millman, broadcast on Voice America Business. Listen on iTunes.
REINVENTING THE WHEEL IN PAPERBACK
Jessica Helfand's Reinventing the Wheel has been released in paperback by Princeton Architectural Press. Library Journal says "this thoroughly unusual book will delight graphic, information and book designers." Vanity Fair says, "You'll never look at a Ritz cracker the same. . ." Popular Mechanics calls it "an informative, fun and, at times, funny book that will be welcomed by history and technology buffs alike." Dwell calls it "a joyous and unabashed celebration." Meanwhile, Chip Kidd simply says "it's the greatest thing since the invention of the wheel."
New poster for "Nub City," a feature film in development by Errol Morris.
WINTERHOUSE WRITING AWARDS
Announcing the Winterhouse Awards for Design Writing + Criticism, a new initiative of AIGA and the Winterhouse Institute. These awards include a $5,000 writing award and a $1,000 student award, and will be juried by Jessica Helfand, Kurt Andersen, Julie Lasky and Meghan O'Rourke. The deadline is June 30, 2006. Information.
YALE LAW JOURNAL REDESIGN
Winterhouse redesigned the Yale Law Journal using Matthew Carter's new typeface, Yale. The redesign issue appeared in October 2005.
BELOW THE FOLD:
The Winterhouse Institute is pleased to announce the first issue of Below the Fold:, an occasional journal of design and visual culture. This issue features disaster needlepoints, urban bollards, security strategies, poison labels, and a caution-tape dress.
WINTERHOUSE WINS BOOK AWARD Lasting Impressions, a catalog from the Grolier Club distributed by the University of Chicago, won the 2005 Connecticut Book Award for Design
John Stossel on the three most important design mistakes Americans make.
VOLVELLES ON VIEW
Selections from Jessica’s volvelles collection, recently donated to Yale University's Art of the Book Collection, appear in an exhibition at Yale University's Sterling Memorial Library.
THE END WINS
Hans Erich Nossack's The End: Hamburg 1943, a co-publication of Winterhouse Editions and University of Chicago Press, has received a 2005 book design award from The American Association of University Presses.
TWO MILLION SERVED
Design Observer has passed a milestone of 2 million site visits since its launch in October 2003.
The first season of fine maple syrup produced from Winterhouse maple trees is SOLD OUT.
ACCLAIM FOR NEXTBOOK
Nextbook.org wins 2004 Web Award for
outstanding achievement in website development.
An ad for MoveOn is published in The New York Times to coincide with the opening of the 2004 Republican Convention. Designed with Pentagram, this ad is the print extension of Errol Morris's "Switch" television campaign in which former Bush supporters explain why they're voting for Kerry in 2004.
THE GROLIER CLUB
Lasting Impressions, the first detailed illustrated overview of The Grolier Club's world-renowned collections on the art and history of the book published by Winterhouse Editions.
In partnership with Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Winterhouse Editions publishes Exporting Extremism, an excerpt from PPFA President Gloria Feldt’s The War on Choice.
WINTERHOUSE SELLS MOVIE RIGHTS
Sidney Pollack has paid Winterhouse for the right to use The National Security Strategy as a prop on Nicole Kidman's bedside table in his upcoming feature The Interpreter, a suspenseful thriller of international intrigue set inside the political corridors of the United Nations.