The Saul Bass Collection

Saul Bass

Elaine and Saul Bass edit a film, ca. 1990

The Saul Bass Collection consists of title sequences, logo designs, commercials, short films and television work by the legendary designer and filmmaker.  The collection includes the work for which Bass is best known: his iconic title sequences for films by Alfred Hitchcock, Stanley Kubrick, Otto Preminger and Martin Scorsese.  It also includes lesser-known work such as commercials for Dixie Cups, Ray-O-Vac, Westinghouse and National Bohemian Beer; later work for such companies as AT&T, NBC and Mattel; and the visual sequences that Bass helped create as a consultant on such films as “Grand Prix” and “Psycho.”

The collection also contains extensive materials on the Academy Award-winning® documentary short subject “Why Man Creates” and the Academy Award-nominated live action shorts “Notes on the Popular Arts” and “The Solar Film,” all of which Bass directed in collaboration with his wife Elaine.  It also includes production materials related to “Phase IV,” a feature film that Bass directed, and “Quest,” a science fiction short that the couple produced and directed together.

The film material at the Academy Film Archive is complemented by paper material, photographs, design sketches and posters in the Saul Bass Collection at the Academy’s Margaret Herrick Library.

More about Saul Bass

Saul Bass was one of the most versatile and influential figures of 20th century design, who in his 60-year professional career (1936–1996) revolutionized the field of film title sequences and created dozens of corporate trademarks that have become instantly recognizable elements of contemporary visual culture.  Best known for the bold images and kinetic typography of his motion picture title sequences, Bass is also famous for the compressed, intense minimalism exemplified in his film posters.  He received an Academy Award for “Why Man Creates” in 1968, and the AIGA Medal, the American Institute of Graphic Arts’ highest honor, in 1981.

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