Inducted into the Hall of Fame for his groundbreaking contributions to industrial design, Brooks Stevens stands as a true visionary in the field. Born on June 7, 1911, Stevens dedicated his life to shaping the aesthetic and functional aspects of everyday objects, leaving an indelible mark on design history.
Raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Brooks passion for design blossomed at an early age. After studying at Cornell University and later attending the Milwaukee State Teachers College, he embarked on a career that would redefine the concept of industrial design.
Brooks founded Brooks Stevens, Inc. in 1934, marking the beginning of a prolific career that spanned over six decades. His innovative approach to design encompassed a wide range of products, from household appliances to automobiles, and he became renowned for seamlessly blending form and function.
In the 1940s, Stevens collaborated with Harley-Davidson, creating iconic motorcycle designs that became synonymous with the brand’s identity. His work on the Hydra-Glide model revolutionized motorcycle design, setting a new standard for the industry.
Stevens’ influence extended into the automotive realm, where he played a pivotal role in shaping the Studebaker lineup. The Studebaker Champion and Golden Hawk are testaments to his ability to infuse elegance into automotive design, earning him widespread acclaim.
Stevens even designed the famous Oscar Mayer Wienermobile in 1952. The distinctive vehicle became a beloved symbol, showcasing his ability to inject humor and creativity into his work.
It’s been said that Stevens himself designed over tens of thousands of products from the rotary lawn mower and first commercial outboard to the modern-day snowmobile and first motorhome. Even the Miller Brewing Company logo was designed by Brooks.
Brooks Stevens’ impact on Wisconsin’s design landscape is immeasurable. His Wisconsin studio became a hub for creativity and innovation, influencing the next generation of designers. Stevens’ legacy extends far beyond Wisconsin, reaching global recognition for his ability to redefine industries through design excellence.