Ellen Lupton is a writer, curator, and graphic designer. She is director of the Graphic Design MFA program at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore and director of the College's Center for Design Thinking. As senior curator of contemporary design at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, she has produced numerous exhibitions and books, including Mechanical Brides: Women and Machines from Home to Office (1993), Mixing Messages: Graphic Design and Contemporary Culture (1996), Letters from the Avant-Garde (1996), Skin: Surface, Substance + Design (2002), and the National Design Triennial series. She curated the exhibition Graphic Design: Now In Production with Walker Art Center's Andrew Blauvelt in 2011.
She is author and editor of numerous books on design. Thinking with Type (2004, 2010) is a basic guide to typography that is used worldwide as a reference and text book. Books authored and designed with MICA students include D.I.Y.: Design It Yourself (2006), Indie Publishing: How to Design and Produce Your Own Book (2008), and Graphic Design Thinking: Beyond Brainstorming (2011). Graphic Design: The New Basics (2008), co-authored with Jennifer Cole Phillips and MICA students, is illustrated with work by MICA graduate and undergraduate students.