Rich Silverstein Returns to His Artistic Roots with a Solo Installation on the News

By Kyle O'Brien 

Before Rich Silverstein was the head of an influential ad agency, the co-founder of Goodby Silverstein & Partners was a Parsons School of Design grad and an art director for Rolling Stone. Now, he is combining his love of design with his fascination for the news in a solo art installation in San Francisco.

This week the Minnesota Street Project—an art center in San Francisco’s Dogpatch district—will present “I Read the News Today Oh Boy,” by Rich Silverstein. The exhibition will feature a series of works that Silverstein made reflecting on the Trump era, created by using text and images that he hand-ripped from the New York Times.

“For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated with the news. Later graphic design, typography and images printed on newsprint were even more compelling to me,” said Silverstein in a statement.


This project combines his personal and professional interests, drawing on his longtime experience in graphic design, advertising and editorial to reflect on modern politics. Silverstein explained the genesis of the project in a short video.

The project started November 25, 2019, with Silverstein setting a goal of documenting Donald Trump’s impeachment by tearing full-width banner headlines out of the New York Times and using them to create collage-based artworks. It was initially titled “85 Days,” though it quickly expanded far beyond Trump’s initial impeachment trial to include the election of President Biden, the Black Lives Matter movement, the storming of the U.S. Capitol and Trump’s second impeachment hearing.

Silverstein would read each morning paper and deliberately rip out key sections of texts that felt particularly relevant or stirring, and during the pandemic, the project expanded.

Works in the solo exhibition include “85 Days,” a large-scale, text-based collage that will be installed on the floor of the gallery and can be reconfigured like a puzzle to create different narratives; and the title work, “I Read the News Today Oh Boy,” which calls attention to Trump’s misunderstanding and mislabeling of hypersonic missiles.

These works, along with other text-based artworks, will be presented alongside a series of photograph and diptychs that explore Trump’s presidency, his legacy and the beginning of the Biden administration. The show runs through July 31 at the Minnesota Street Project.