2010 April 14
Another W Legend Steps Down
(NEW YORK) W is losing another masthead topper---the third name on its current masthead, in fact. Edward Leida, the magazine's revered design director and a 25-year veteran of Fairchild Publications (which is now owned entirely by Condé Nast), is stepping down. Among myriad responsibilities, Leida and Freedman were responsible for developing the original visual identity of W, which Leida redesigned in 1991 to great fanfare. During his tenure at Fairchild Publications, he developed the design of every Fairchild trade publication from HFN to DNR from the period of 1985 and 1995. Additionally, he lent his golden touch to Fairchild's glossies by establishing formats for Jane, Details, and Women's Wear Daily.
Under Leida's leadership, W was nominated for National Magazine Awards for Excellence in Design in 1999, 2000, 2001, and 2005. The Society of Publication Designers, which has given Leida and his team too many accolades to count, nominated W for its highest honor, Magazine of the Year, in 2007. Leida has also been instrumental in developing the next generation of Condé Nast art directors, including Rockwell Harwood, Kirby Rodriguez, and Nathalie Kirsheh.
A master of typography (and honoree of awards from the Type Directors Club), Leida's work is familiar to even the most casual W readers, thanks to his unforgettable, conceptual well-openers that turn words into works of art. In addition to his professional duties, Leida has taught at and performed portfolio reviews for SPD, the School of Visual Arts, the Columbia School of Journalism, and the American Society of Magazine Editors, among others. SVA and Parsons have recently approached Leida in hopes that he will serve as an adjunct professor.
Trained as both an industrial and graphic designer, Leida has collaborated with architects such as Richard Meier and also made design forays into neckwear, display easels, and even plush toys. He continues to operate his own firm, Edward Leida Design, which engages in a wide range of projects such as advertising and the development of corporate identity to include Dolce & Gabbana, the David Barton Gym, Raymond Weil, Céline, the New York Times, and Coty.
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