Tuesday, April 6, 2010

In Memory of Norman Schureman

On March 21, 2010 a light was extinguished before its time. Los Angeles, Art Center College of Design, the product design trade, and one incredible and loving family lost their favored son, friend, teacher, and family man, Norman Schureman, in a terrible tragedy that should never have happened. As always, with untimely death, we are left behind to pick up the pieces of what existed so warmly just moments ago. Straight Sadness.

On last Sunday, I traveled seven hours in the wee hours of the morning to commune with fellow mourners in the sculpture garden nestled high in the San Gabriel Mountains beside the Art Center Hillside campus. The moment I got close, I could tell from the line of cars, driven by sunglass-clad teenagers dressed in black, filing up the Pasadena crest for miles that this was not going to be a small or easy remembrance.

The campus was bustling as I have never seen it before, but the energy this morning was different in that everyone was singularly focused on this one soul instead of a myriad of individual projects or missions. The love was as warm and present as the Southern California sunshine.

Norman, you were remembered as a King in a way so richly deserved. From the student works (current and former) that lined the entire east side of the campus your indelible mark on the industry could be seen stretching on for centuries. From the letters of family and friends read with such passion it was clear that the oak tree your life planted in the middle of this world would sustain lives for equally long. From the tears of the sweetest and most broken-hearted Mother and Father, I can only say that you will never be forgotten. Never.

I knew you only briefly, but I have never cried so hard.

From another man, committed to the cause of realizing great design and promoting the cause of the young and unheralded, I promise and dedicate to you that we will never stop and never cease until each happy customer knows the name of the young designers whose legacies put a smile on his face every time he uses their products.

Peace and Attaboy.