Steven Heller

2024 Educators Hall of Fame Inductee

Art Director, Journalist, Critic, Author & Educator

A prominent American art director, journalist, critic, author, and educator, Heller has authored or co-authored over 200 books on design and popular culture. He is the co-chair and co-founder with Lita Talarico of the MFA Design: Designer As Entrepreneur program at the School of Visual Arts, NYC and partner and editor-at-large for where he writes The Daily Heller.



Steven Heller is the co-chair and co-founder with Lita Talarico of the MFA Design: Designer As Entrepreneur program at the School of Visual Arts, NYC. Additionally, throughout his tenure at SVA NYC, he co-founded numerous programs including MFA Product Design, MFA Interaction Design, MFA Design Criticism as well as Workshops in Design for Social Impact and Typographic Design. He was the director of Designing for Children and Where The Truth Lies Symposiums, and co-director with Richard Wilde Modernism and Eclecticism; A Symposium on the History of American Graphic Design. Outside of being a prolific educator, Heller was an art director of the New York Times for 33 years, Art Director of the Times Book Review for almost 30 of those years and “Visuals” columnist for the Book Review and “Graphic Content” column for the Times’ T-Style.

He frequently wrote for Upper and Lower Case, Baseline, Creation, I.D., Graphis and other international design journals. He was a longtime contributor to Print magazine. Today he is a partner in and editor-at-large for (where he writes The Daily Heller). He is the author, co-author, and editor of over 200 books on the history and practice of graphic design, illustration, satiric art and writes frequently about popular visual culture. He has authored an equal number of intros, prefaces and essays for other books, including two monographs on his wife, Louise Fili. He has collaborated on numerous books with Gail Anderson, Seymour Chwast, Veronique Vienne and Mirko Ilic.

He was awarded the AIGA Medal, elected to the Art Director’s Hall of Fame, Eric Carle Award, SOI Richard Gangel Award for Art Direction and is the 2011 Recipient of the Smithsonian National Design Award for “Design Mind” and has two honorary Ph.Ds in Fine Arts by The College for Creative Studies in Detroit and the University of West Bohemia in the Czech Republic, among other honors. His most recent book with design legend Seymour Chwast, HELL: THE PEOPLE, THE PLACES is one of fifteen they’ve done together. His autobiographical book “Growing Up Underground: A Memoir of Counter Culture New York” was published in Fall 2022 by Princeton Architectural Press.