Sheila Levrant de Bretteville

Graphic Designer / United States / The Sheila Studio

In-Process Site-Specific Proposals


...所以... Exterior and interior, Hong Kong Design Institute, Hong Kong, China

Water Writing Public Sidewalk, Hangzhou, China

...hunger for words... Obama-related public projects, Occidental College Campus, Pasadena, California

Conflict and Confluence Point State Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Sponsored by the Allegheny Conference and the Pittsburgh Arts Council

Completed Permanent Site-Specific Commissions


Step(pe) New threshold for the old Water Tower, Yekaterinburg, Russia. Sponsored by CEC ArtsLink


Hillhouse High School Academic entrance lobby, New Haven Connecticut. Sponsored by the City of New Haven Department of Cultural Affairs


Workers Constellation: Take break... Out to lunch... Back to Work... Outdoor seating, “Lazy Susan” table, landscaping at the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training, Cranston, Rhode Island. Sponsored by the Rhode Island Department of Cultural Affairs


Hear Us Mural, Massachusetts State House, Boston, Massachusetts. Sponsored by Massachusetts Council on the Humanities.

At the start... At long last... 207th Street station, A train terminus. Manhattan, New York. Sponsored by the New York City Metropolitan Transit Authority


Search: Literature Library entrance stairway, Flushing, Queens, New York. Sponsored by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs


Omoide noShotokyo (Memories of old Little Tokyo) Los Angeles, California. Sponsored by the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles. Path of Stars New Haven, Connecticut. Sponsored by McCormack Baron & Associates, the City of Los Angeles, and the New Haven Arts Council


West End Echoes Nashua Street quadrant of Boston, Massachusetts. Sponsored by Boston’s Big Dig. Partially completed


Biddy Mason: Time & Place Los Angeles, California. Sponsored by the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles

Selected Group Exhibitions


“Now Dig This! Art and Black Los Angeles, 1960-1980,” Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. Curated by Kellie Jones


“WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution,”Geffen Contemporary at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, New York. Curated by Connie Butler. Interview:


“Design Culture Now,” Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, New York. Curated by Ellen Lupton

“Public Art, USA,” Palace of Architects, Moscow, and Palace of Architects Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. Curated by Jennifer McGregor and Jane Lombard


“The Lure of the Local,” an exhibition of public arts projects, University of Colorado Art Galleries. Curated by Lucy Lippard


“Graphic Design USA,” Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and IBM Gallery, New York. Curated by Mildred Friedman


“Universal/Unique,” Rosenwald-Wolf Art Gallery, Philadelphia


“Arachne & Athena: An Invitation to Dinner,” Sheinbaum Gallery, New York


“At Home,” Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach California


“Images of an Era: The American Poster 1945–1975,” Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston. Selected Articles Written by Sheila Levrant de Bretteville

“Night,” Sheila Levrant de Bretteville, Wang Min, and Xiaohong Shen, eds. Shanghai People's Publishing House 上海人民出版社,2007

“Omoide noShotokyo: Remembering old Little Tokyo.” In The Architecture of the Everyday, Deborah Berke and Steven Harris eds. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1997

“Feminist Design.” In Space and Society/Spazio e Societa, Julian Beinart and Giancarlo de Carlo, eds. Boston: The MIT Press, 1986

“The Parlorization of Our Homes and Ourselves.” In Chrysalis, A Magazine of Women’s Culture (Los Angeles), no. 8, 1977

“Some aspects of design from the perspective of a woman designer.” In Icographic: A Quarterly Review of International Visual Communication Design (London), no. 6, 1973.

Selected Publications Written about Sheila Levrant de Bretteville’s Work

“Art, graphisme et féminisme à Los Angeles autour Sheila Levrant de Bretteville,” by Benoît Buquet, in Histoire de l’art, no. 63, 2008

Women of Design, Influence and Inspiration from the Original Trailblazers to the New Groundbreakers, by Bryony Gomez-Palacio and Armin Vit. Cincinnati: HOW Books, 2008

WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, Catalogue for exhibition (2007) at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and P.S. 1 MoMA, New York, Connie Butler ed. 2008 Interview re: PINK poster

Bridget “Biddy” Mason: From Slave to Businesswoman, by Jean Kinney Williams. Minneapolis: Compass Point Books, 2006

Along the Way: MTA Arts for Transit, by Sandra Bloodworth and William Ayres. New York: Monacelli Press, 2006

“US DESIGN: Sheila Levrant de Bretteville,” in kAk magazine (Russia), no. 18, 2001

Design Culture Now: The National Design Triennial, exhibition catalogue, by Donald Albrecht and Ellen Lupton. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2000

The Education of a Graphic Designer, by Steven Heller. New York: Allworth Press, 1999

“Finally, a Wall of Their Own,” by Eileen McNamara, Boston Globe, October 20, 1999.

Design beyond Design, Jan van Toorn ed. Maastricht: Jan van Eyck Akademie Editions, 1998.

Landscape Narratives, by Matthew Potteiger and Jamie Purinton, New York: John Wiley, 1998

The Lure of the Local: Senses of Place in a Multicentered Society, by Lucy R. Lippard. New York: New Press, 1997

Mapping the Terrain: New Genre Public Art, Suzanne Lacy, ed. Seattle: Bay Press, 1995

“Everybody is a Star,” Historic Preservation magazine March/April 1995

“Women in a Men’s World, Profile: Sheila Levrant de Bretteville,” Singapore Sun MEGAzine, August 17, 1994

“Taking It to the Streets,” by Mark Zaretsky, New Haven Register (CT), March 27, 1994

“Sheila Levrant de Bretteville: Dirty Design and Fuzzy Theory,” by Ellen Lupton, Eye magazine, no. 13, 1992

Women in Design, by Liz McQuiston. New York: Rizzoli, 1988

“Sheila de Bretteville: Street Signs to Eat,” by Tom Nolan, Los Angeles Magazine, March 1987

“Twenty Under Thirty,” in Step-By-Step Graphics magazine September/October, 1986

“Sheila Levrant de Bretteville,” by Dugald Stermer, Communication Arts magazine May/June 1982

“Right on, Sheila!,” by Gilles de Bure, Cree (France), 1971

Selected Awards


“Grandmaster” award, New York Art Directors Club


Best Public Artwork of the year, Step(pe), Americans for the Arts


“Design Legend” Gold Medal, American Institute of Graphic Arts


The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven Elm and Ivy Award


Golden Light Awards Book of the Year, for Intimate Visions: The Photographs of Dorothy Norman


Communication Arts Award, American Institute of Graphic Arts. Special IDCA ’71 issue of The Aspen Newspaper


Communication Arts Award, American Institute of Graphic Arts. Special issue of Arts in Society: Prologue to a Community, 1970.

Selected Judging (awards for designers)


CUP (Center for Urban Pedagogy)

Cooper Hewitt National Design Awards

The Rome Prize

NEA (National Endowment for the Arts)

The 100 Show

New York Art Directors Club

AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts)

Society of Publication Designers



Honorary Doctorate, Moore College of Art and Design, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


Honorary Doctorate, California College of Arts and Crafts San Francisco, California


Master of Fine Arts in graphic design, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, Connecticut


Bachelor of Arts in art history, Columbia University, Barnard College, New York

Faculty Positions


Street Professor and Director of Studies in Graphic Design, Yale University School of Art, New Haven, Connecticut


Founding Chair, Department of Design and Illustration, Otis Art Institute, Los Angeles, California


President, faculty (co-founder) the Woman’s Building, Los Angeles, California. Visiting faculty in Schools of Architecture at UC Berkeley, USC, Cal Poly Pomona


Founding Faculty, California Institute of the Arts, School of Design, Valencia, California

comments powered by Disqus