In Memoriam: Designer David Crow

David Crow1

In Memoriam: David Crow, formerly Liverpool School of Art and Design

Last week the Graphic Design and Illustration team discovered the shocking news that their friend and ex-colleague David Crow had passed away.

David was Head of the Department of Graphic Arts at LJMU between 1995 and 2004 and his influence on our course and the Liverpool School of Art and Design was and still is hugely significant.

David positioned the undergraduate programme as a broad and experimental visual communication course with an emphasis on the authorial voice of designers and illustrators. His book ‘Visible Signs: an introduction to Semiotics’, now in its 4th Edition, is a key text for our students; and it was David the University turned to, to initiate a radical review of the School which ultimately led to the development of the John Lennon Art and Design Building.

Most significantly many of the current Graphic Design and Illustration team either worked with David or were taught by him and in several cases both. For those taught by David, we simply wouldn’t be the graphic designers we are without him. For those who worked with David, he set standards that we have strived to live up to ever since. Despite David moving on to bigger things as Dean of Manchester School of Art and PVC at the University of Arts London (see tribute) he remained a close friend of the course, often featuring the artwork and research of our students and staff  in each addition of ‘Visible Signs’.

The following online tribute by one of David’s students, who he taught at Liverpool, describes how we all feel: 

“Shocked and saddened to hear this news. The sheer volume of people that David, at some time or other, taught, guided, or influenced is incalculable. And that is not to mention the people his work will continue to teach, guide, and influence in the future. Teaching, curriculum design, publishing, developing, and redeveloping institutions. It just goes on and on. The word industrious is a serious understatement. When you add it all up you wonder – How on earth did he ever find the time? They say the last impression is the lasting impression. Well, I remember David as someone that always had time for me when I was with him. What more can you ask of a teacher? Solid as a rock, wise like an oak tree. A real gentleman with a calm, comforting and genuine presence. Heartfelt condolences to those near and dear to him, especially to his family. He will be terribly missed.”

David died peacefully on 10 June after a short illness. His funeral will be next Thursday 30th June at 2.30pm, in Stockport.

Ian Mitchell
Senior Lecturer, Graphic Design and Illustration



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