How the ‘I Heart NY’ Logo Transcended Marketing and Endures 4 Decades After Its Debut

It still represents the spirit of the city

The iconic logo appears on everything from key chains to coffee mugs to ads in the subway. Neville Elder/Corbis via Getty Images

Sixteen years ago, Milton Glaser was sitting at his usual wooden table at his design studio on 32nd Street, looking out the window at the black smoke billowing from Lower Manhattan, where the World Trade Center Towers had stood until the previous afternoon. Like most New Yorkers, the famous graphic designer was shocked and numb from the 9/11 terror attacks. But unlike them, Glaser had the means of making an immediate difference. Breaking out the famous I ♥ NY logo, Glaser singed the left side of the heart and added the words “more than ever.” It was, he would later explain, a reflection of “what all of us were experiencing after the tragedy, a deepening of our sense of love and commitment to the city that is our home.”

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This story first appeared in the Sept. 11, 2017, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.
@UpperEastRob robert.klara@adweek.com Robert Klara is a senior editor, brands at Adweek, where he specializes in covering the evolution and impact of brands.
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