Warren Lehrer is a writer and designer known as a pioneer in the fields of visual literature and design authorship. His work explores the vagaries and luminescence of character, the relationships between social structures and the individual, and the pathos and absurdity of life. Known most for his unique marriage of writing and typography, his books and multimedia projects capture the shape of thought and reunite oral and pictorial traditions of storytelling in books, animations and performance. His books include: A Life in Books: The Rise and Fall of Bleu Mobley; Five Oceans in a Teaspoon (with Dennis Bernstein); Crossing the BLVD: strangers, neighbors, aliens in a new America (with Judith Sloan); The Portrait Series (four-book suite); GRRRHHHH: a study of social patterns (with Bernstein and Sandra Brownlee); French Fries (with Bernstein); i mean you know; and versations.
Lehrer has received many awards for his books and multimedia projects. Honors include: The 2019 Ladislav Sutnar Lifetime Achievement Prize “for his pioneering work in design and visual literature,” 2016 Center for Book Arts Honoree “for being an innovator and boundary breaker,” the Brendan Gill Prize, the Innovative Use of Archives Award, the Independent Publisher (IPPY) Outstanding Book of the Year Award, the International Book Award for Best New Fiction, three American Institute for Graphic Arts (AIGA) Book Awards, a Special Recognition Award from the Society of Typographic Arts, two Type Directors Club Awards, two Design Incubation Awards, a Media That Matters Award, a Prix Arts Electronica Award, fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and New York State Foundation for the Arts, and grants from the New York State Council on the Arts, the Rockefeller, Ford, Greenwall, and Furthermore Foundations.
His work has been exhibited widely and is in many collections including MoMA, L.A. County Art Museum, The Getty Museum, The Walker Art Center, Pompidou Centre, and Tate Gallery. He is a frequent presenter at universities, conferences, art and literary centers, and bookstores throughout the US and internationally. Lehrer is a founding faculty member of the Designer As Author/Entrepreneur MFA program at the School of Visual Arts in NYC, and a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Purchase College, SUNY. With his wife Judith Sloan, Lehrer founded EarSay, a non-profit arts organization in Queens, NY, dedicated to uncovering and portraying the lives of the uncelebrated in print, on stage, on radio, in exhibitions, electronic media, and through educational programs in public schools, community centers, and prisons. https://warrenlehrer.com/