The six-color rainbow flag, which is now universally recognized as a symbol for LGBTQ pride, has been added to the MoMA's design collection.

The designer Gilbert Baker wanted to create an image representative of the spectrum of identities represented in the LGBTQ community. He originally designed the flag in 1978, during a time when gay visibility was being highly contested, and was initially inspired by how immediately recognizable the American flag is. 

Rainbow Pride flag added to MoMA's permanent design collection. Image 1.

Image: Duncan Roy

Baker says "A flag is different than any other form of art. It’s not a painting, it’s not just cloth, it is not a just logo -- it functions in so many different ways. I thought that we needed that kind of symbol, that we needed as a people something that everyone instantly understands. Flags are about proclaiming power, so it’s very appropriate."

Baker first made the flag in an attic in San Francisco with around 30 people, his sewing skills and trash cans full of natural dye and salt. Now it has become an international symbol.

The flag will join a collection of iconic symbols including the @ and recycling logo.

Cover image: Wikimedia Commons