A 1967 DeLaSalle graduate, who is a world-renowned graphic designer and marketing executive, has collaborated with current visual arts students to create and paint a mural for his alma mater.
The mural by Joe Duffy ‘67, painted on the wall inside the lobby of the “A” building, reflects DeLaSalle’s longevity and connection to the rich history of Nicollet Island. The mural features snapshots of student life, the school campus, its proximity to the river and wildlife, and in tribute to people symbolic to DeLaSalle’s 119-year history. It includes depictions of an American Indian juxtaposed with images of a De La Salle Christian Brother and Brother Michael Collins ‘55, the school president from 1991-2012 and a close personal friend of Duffy’s. Another image portrays the “C” building, the original school building, opened in 1900 to meet the needs of a growing immigrant population in Minneapolis, and later destroyed by fire in February 1971.
Students in advanced-level art classes and the National Art Honor Society helped Duffy in the concept and painting of the mural. This provided them a unique opportunity to work with an artist who has distinguished himself as a renowned graphic designer and brand marketer. Duffy started his own advertising agency, Duffy Design, and has played a key role in the redesign of such brands as Diet Coke, Sony, Minute Maid orange juice, and the Mall of America. His accolades include a Legacy Medal in 2004 and a Fellow Award in 2007, both from the American Institute of Graphic Arts. His first book, “Brand Apart,” published in 2005 has been an industry standard with marketing and branding companies worldwide.
DeLaSalle inducted Duffy into its Hall of Fame in August 2018 as the first recipient of the newly-established Brother Michael Collins Award. The award recognizes those members of the Islander community who have made significant contributions to DeLaSalle and to our greater communities through their talents and contribuitions to the fine arts.