Guest Contribution by Pascal Panagiotidis
Design Walk took place on February 5-7, 2010 in Athens/Greece exclusively sponsored by BOMBAY SAPPHIRE gin and Yatzer couldn't miss this annual appointment. 13 graphic design studios gathered for the fourth year, and exhibited their work inviting all design fans to have a taste of the Greek design scene. This time Double Decker, a London-based curating agency, invited all 13 Graphic Design Studios to play with fundamental contradictions and create a concept based on the following ideas.
1. Void vs. fullness
2. Noise vs. silence
3. Beauty vs. Ugliness
4. Interesting vs. boring
5. Thin vs. bold
6. Word vs. image
7. Symbolic vs. literal
8. Landscape vs. portrait
9. Positive vs. negative
10. Anarchy vs. order
11. Digital vs. analogue
12. Foreground vs. background
13. Original vs. Copy
That's a topic everyone is familiar with. Contradictions are a part of everyone's daily life, besides what's the biggest contradiction you can think of? Our biological cycle of course. Life vs death, from the moment we get born till the day we die we live a constant contradiction. Design walk's purpose was not only to highlight such oppositions and challenge all of us to think but also to undercover the way different ideas can stimulate creativity and inspiration. In other words to explore how two opposite poles can come closer, invite people to find possible ways to take advantage of their common elements and finally use or even merge them together. This is a procedure trough which new ideas will emerge even from the most unlikely things or concepts.
There is no doubt that this year Design Walk came up with an original idea however most of the design studios didn't manage to meet the challenge but most importantly failed to pioneer. Just few of them presented interesting concepts and our favorites are posted below..but if you want more then visit the official DESIGN WALK website.
G - Beauty vs. Ugliness
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and G studio comes to confirm this. Different objects are hidden in small white boxes on a magnetic board which is divided in the beautiful and ugly part. People are invited to discover them and do their choice. Ugly becomes automatically beautiful and vice versa whilst everyone makes a statement through his choice...and there is no need to mention that our beloved BOMBAY SAPPHIRE "petit gin" was always in the beautful side of the wall!
I AM design, etc. - Original vs. copy
What is original and what is not? Are there original ideas? Find out authentic or not authentic elements of our behaviour, the roles we are supposed to play and their originality. A new promising studio with an original and fresh project that was one of the Design Walk's highlights this year. Is this a good and original idea that is worth copying? The decision is up to you.
Pi6 - Symbolic vs. Literal
Pi6 is a pleasant surprise, a sure value that excels every year. Symbol and the symbolic. Using a particular symbol (the Heart), a well known and familiar shape with certain connotations, Pi6 consider the literal and symbolic dimensions of the boundaries between their use of it and the limits of its interpretation. Pi6 studio managed to attract most of the Design Walk's visitors this year.
The design shop - Anarchy vs.Order
In design, just like in art, there are moments where the notions of order and anarchy co-exist and interact with each other creating complicated and fascinating images. The design shop presents a team of Greek and foreign artists and designers whose work in illustration, 3d-constructions, photography and video is a unique balance between order, rules and organisation, inversion and experimentation.
Participating artists: bestbefore, Company, Graphic Nothing, Nick Howard, Marc Johns, Evangelos Kaimakis, Meyoko, Eva Temponera, Konstantinos Trichas.
Poor Designers - Portrait vs.Landscape
Poor Designers are asking visitors to experience the dilemmas of designers regarding the frame of the picture. They will exploit all the space available in the studio and produce special glasses through which everyone is invited to try setting the form of their ‘picture’ (portrait or landscape). They develop a sense of a ‘contained’ view which they can then push and move through its changes from portrait to landscape. Taking in the historical origins of layout terminology and thoughts on: Western style / Chinese ideograms, glossed bibles, Talmud, etc., the Poor Designers make the assumption that during the creative process, the designer asks WHICH SIDE UP? and argue that often the project itself answered / imposes THIS SIDE UP.