legendary chicago designer hayward r. blake dies at 94.
hayward robert blake. 94, born in west haven, connecticut. he died of natural causes on 13 march 2020.
husband of simone louise (nee roussy), for 58 years; loving father of paul (kim), christopher (anita), and yvonne (brian); proud grandfather to andrew, meredith, anaïs, anikó, hayward, tawny, and kiera. hayward met his wife in france during wwii while serving as a sergeant in the signal corps., after which he studied design at institutions including, the cambridge school of design and illinois institute of design. he began working in the early 1950s as a package designer in new york city and later moved to chicago where he worked with raymond lowey, the container corporation, sears, ecko-alcoa, and low’s, inc. in 1961 he founded, hayward blake and co., and in 1967 incorporated with jack weiss. together they worked with designers in the design partnership which served as a model for similar collaborative efforts elsewhere. his design projects included the signage system for o’hare airport, identity designs for wait radio, titles for the film bang the drum slowly, catalog design for the block gallery, and identity program for the newspaper the rapid city journal. hayward taught at northwestern university’s, medill school of journalism, and lectured and judged at communication exhibitions nationwide. he was an active member of the 27 chicago designers, the american institute of graphic arts (fellow), society of typographic arts (president), the caxton club (president), design evanston, evanston art center (board member), and the porsche club of america. hayward was an amateur race car driver, loved sailing, scuba diving and was an avid squash player. the words above are provided by hayward’s son, christopher a designer in his own right, currently an adjunct professor in the interactive arts and media department at columbia college chicago.
i owe a great deal to hayward. he was responsible for my first chicago design hire at his firm, the design partnership. an advocate of thinking differently his concepts were engaging and caught your eye. his penchant for details was no secret as everyone knew he always carried a small screwdriver lining up screws in the lighting fixtures, something i tend to do myself now. in his mid-80s he was still working the audience at local design happenings. regarding the amateur race car driver thing, he looked and played the part.
memorial services will be announced at a later date.
donations may be made to either the alzheimer’s association or the newberry library.