Diversity by Design

The city of Graz was dubbed the cultural capital of Austria in 2003, and a UNESCO City of Design in 2011. Much of this pays tribute to Design Monat Graz, a month-long design festival put on by the city every Spring. 

The task was to create a visual identity and creative framework for Design Monat Graz 2017. Working with three other designers, the 'Diversity by Design' concept was realized.

Selected by a panel of judges as a finalist, the team made a pitch to Creative Industries Styria. In the end, the Diversity concept finished as runner-up.  


 

The Concept - Diversity by Design (Vielfalt durch Design)

The theme of 'diversity' emerged from how the event draws in an international audience. Bringing together designers from all backgrounds and disciplines creates unlimited potential for creation and idea sharing. Design Monat Graz fosters a sort of cognitive surplus, and at the heart of that surplus is the inherent diversity of the event. We looked for organic, unrestricted shapes and textures to help represent this. 

What started as "Diversity by Design" turned into "Vielfalt durch Design". The team decided to translate the claim to German as to appeal to the home audience.

The Inspiration - Ferrofluid

As we developed the creative framework, we looked for ways to represent the attractive and generating quality of the event. This led discussion toward the idea of magnetism. The organic energy of magnets felt like the perfect way to describe the natural force of Design Monat Graz.

The Key Visual - Iterations

A look at some of the options the team played with before selecting a final shape for the key visual. 

The Key Visual - Digital

Here we see the final key visual used to represent 'Diversity by Design'. Though the shape was first done up in illustrator, the team continued working to remove the shape from the computer. After finalizing the digital shape, the team reproduced the key visual as a linocut print and then scanned it back into the computer.   

The Process - Digital to Analog

After finalizing the key visual, we used the linocutting process to bring the shape back into the analog realm. A look at this process can be seen here:

 

Colour

The team selected a high-contrast, modern gradient to bring some life into the design. Working with a simple yet distinct colour palette kept things consistent and instantly recognizable. 

The Poster

Much of the collateral followed in the design of the festival poster. 

The Magazine

The final iteration of the key visual came out of the linocutting process. A single print was selected and photographed, before being scanned back into the computer. From there, we added colour and started using the shape in the design of the event collateral.

Each year, the Design Monat Graz team puts out a magazine showcasing a number of the designers attending the festival. The magazine is full of beautiful imagery and interesting articles.

The Display

As part of the visual identity package, we designed a custom brochure holder. Made of paper, this was a cost-effective way of getting brochures in as many shops and window-fronts as possible. . 

The Location - Branding

As part of our concept, we included environmental design options for the event location. We got a sense of the space through numerous site-walks and photo documentation. Lucky for us, the space offered these great glass cones - a perfect spot to nest the key visual. 

The Location - Wayfinding

We had to think about how folks were going to find the event location. Graz is best explored by foot, so we focused on wayfinding on a human-scale. The following mock-ups show how we might incorporate the key visual into the wayfinding deployed in the surrounding area. 

The Web

We whipped up a new homepage and put together a few gifs - because that's what the kids are into these days.

The Other Stuff

We just kept going - beer labels, shopping bags, cups...