Raymond Loewy

Raymond Fernand Loewy ( born November 5, 1893 in Paris, † July 14, 1986 in Monaco ) was a French-American industrial designer and is next to Hans Ledwinka as one of the inventors of the current line designs.


His parents were from the Vienna native, who grew up in France journalist Maximillian Max Löwy (1860-1919) and his wife, Marie, originally from France Labalme. From 1910, he studied engineering at the University of Paris. In World War I he served in the Corps of Engineers as well as a liaison officer with the American Expeditionary Forces and was awarded the Croix de Guerre and the Commander's Cross of the Legion of Honour. After the death of his parents in 1919 at the Spanish Flu his two older brothers emigrated to the United States.

In September 1919, he followed his brothers, who wanted to give him a job at General Electric in the United States. As at the crossing on the SS France, the captain an auction to benefit the families of shipwrecked sailors held, he had nothing to offer and made an ink drawing of an attractive, fashionably dressed female passenger on the promenade deck. The successful bidder, the British Consul General in New York, Harry Gloster Armstrong, suggested him to work in the field of commercial art work, and gave him a recommendation to a friend, magazine publisher in New York.

Ten years he worked as a fashion illustrator. In 1929 he was hired by Gestetner, to improve the appearance of the mimeograph. In the same year he became the art director of the Westinghouse Electric Company before 1930 with his own design studio independently made ​​himself. From 1931 he designed and Hupmobile 1936-1963 Studebaker. 1938 Loewy became an American citizen.

In addition to the logo for the food company SPAR and the cigarette brand Lucky Strike is the stromlinienverkleidetete S1 steam locomotive is one of the most popular furniture products Raymond Loewy. In addition, Loewy designed numerous automobiles such as the Greyhound bus Scenicruiser 1954 and the conch shell. His most famous design was the classic shape of the Coca -Cola bottle.

One of his most famous design principles and also the title of his autobiography was Never leave well enough alone (Never leave something as fine ), which is rather incongruous with ugliness sold into German was badly translated. Another he called " MAYA " principle, the four letters for Most Advanced, Yet Acceptable ( " extremely progressive, but still acceptable" ) are available.

Loewy worked in the 1950s for the porcelain manufacturer Rosenthal AG in Selb and created here with Richard S. Latham 1954, inter alia, the classic service " Rosenthal 2000 " with many decors.

After the assassination of John F. Kennedy 's office of Raymond Loewy was hired to design a commemorative stamp. For $ 500, he took over the job and designed the 1964 5 cent John Kennedy brand.

For the Soviets, he designed a tractor.

In 1929 he met the Danish- American Jean Thompson, with whom he was married from 1931 to 1945. She later married the Frenchman Jaques Bienfait. In 1948 he married the PR consultant Viola Erickson ( 1922-1995 ), with whom he 's daughter Laurence Loewy, journalist, writer and television producer ( born August 3, 1953 † 15 October 2008), had had a son.

After a great Raymond Loewy - exhibition in Berlin in 1990, which was sponsored by the cigarette brand "Lucky Strike" the " BAT cigarettes GmbH", originated in Germany, the " Raymond Loewy Foundation". Similar foundations were later established in other countries. The Foundation awards in Germany the Lucky Strike Designer Award to prominent designer with an international background. A Lucky Strike Junior Designer Award is awarded annually. The Raymond Loewy Foundation serves the BAT Group as an integral part of brand and PR strategy of "Lucky Strike".


  • Never leave well enough alone; 1951 ( Online)
  • Ugliness does not sell well: the experiences of the most successful form designer of our time; 1953