Give Me a Sign: The Language of Symbols

Exhibition Website

- Sep 2 2024

Give Me a Sign: The Language of Symbols examines the fascinating histories behind many of the symbols that instruct, protect, entertain, empower, and connect people. 

As important communication tools in our daily lives, symbols are constantly evolving based on new needs and users. They formed some of the first written human expressions and today animate our digital chats.​​

This exhibition marks the 50th anniversary of Henry Dreyfuss’s Symbol Sourcebook: An Authoritative Guide to International Graphic Symbols (1972), a manual that compiled and categorized thousands of symbols in use internationally and helped to elevate the importance of symbols and increase their number in our world. The origin story of the Symbol Sourcebook—told in the exhibition for the first time through primary materials from Cooper Hewitt’s Henry Dreyfuss Archive—has inspired us to look at symbols now and explore their evolution and future.

Credit: Overview from museum website

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