A poster designed by Centre College’s Tom Sturgeon, associate director of design for brand & stewardship communications, for the vice presidential debate held on campus Oct. 11, 2012, is now part of the Smithsonian’s permanent collection in the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. The poster can be displayed at any time or included in special exhibits.
“For the first vice-presidential debate in 2000, the poster produced was named the ‘Thrill in the Ville,’ which played off of ‘The Thrilla in Manila’ boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier in 1976,” Sturgeon said, explaining where the original concept behind the poster design.
After deciding that a poster needed to be created for the second vice presidential debate on campus, Sturgeon produced the ‘Thrill in the Ville II.’
“I wanted to update the look of the first poster and found inspiration from old political advertising,” he explained.
Sturgeon added that the first poster was designed to look like one from the 70s, but for the second one, he wanted it to be red, white and blue.
“I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to be part of two vice presidential debates while at Centre, and to have a poster I created become part of the Smithsonian collection in perpetuity is special,” he concluded. “Knowing that my poster is in the same collection as George Washington’s uniform, Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone, Muhammad Ali’s boxing gloves, Prince’s guitar and Kermit the Frog leaves me without words. It’s just really cool.”
by Kerry Steinhofer
November 6, 2019