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- Graphic Design

And the winners are …

The European Design Awards are a remarkable competition, notably consistent to itself in many respects, yet also metamorphosing over time. One feature that has remained constant is the low entry fees that keep the competition so diverse and so European … Let’s have a look at some gold winning works in 2017: 

Kat. Printed Identity Applications. Design: SILO (NLD)

 

The composition of the European Design Awards jury is really special: Editors and publishers of magazines across Europe come together for three days to sift and evaluate the print categories. This time the nine jurors came from Iceland, Sweden, Norway, UK, Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and Germany. In the digital jury seven colleagues from France, Germany, Sweden, UK, Russia and Greece deliberated over entries in their specialist area. In total the organisers received more than 1000 entries from 26 countries – 32 of them won gold, 49 silver, 49 bronze, and a further 90 reached the final round. From the statistics alone, you can indeed see how high the quality bar was set, and from the prize-winning works it is evident that name, size of studio, budget or reputation played no role in the selection. Innovation, craft skill and relevance were the deciding factors – and these can indeed be demonstrated excellently in small projects, too.

Kat. Packaging Food & Beverages. Design: Bedow (SWE)
Kat. Brand Logo. Design: CLEVER°FRANKE (NLD)

 

For us jury members, too, this is always a special gathering. Last year’s chairman, Davide Fornari (Progetto grafico, www.aiap.it/progettografico), summed it up like this: »I also serve as a jury member for other design awards. The European Design Awards are special because jury members are all peers: we all work for graphic design magazines and contribute to the dissemination of design to a wider audience. We bring together standards and ideas from all over Europe, but all decisions are beyond borders or national concerns. I think ED Awards really promote diversity and are a very good mirror of contemporary European culture. The 2017 edition was surprising: many good projects, even from Italy, were totally unknown to me. I think graphic design is finding new channels, and innovation is making its way out of a critical period.«

Kat. Music / Film Cover. Design: ANTI INC AS (NOR)

 

And of course these few days are a great opportunity to discuss new directions, new trends and developments – and also to debate the phenomenon that cultural differences remain, for all the convergence in this digital age: »What I found interesting about the European Design Awards is that they spot the visual accents that sometimes define the regions of Europe. The Lutheran north, the Catholic south and the orthodox east are also cultural expressions of different ways of thinking. Being a juror at European level is a useful reminder of this«, said Geir Skomsøy (Visuelt, www.grafill.no/visuelt).

Kat. Original Typeface. Design: Smörgåsbord (GBR)
Kat. Artistic Catalogue. Design: Institute Designlab Gutenberg, Hochschule Mainz (GER)

 

The results of last year’s ED Awards do indeed reflect the creative diversity that we have in Europe and some of the work made a big impression on us. Camilla Buch (CAP & Design, www.capdesign.se) expressed this neatly: »The European Design Awards aim to find the best in European design – not just the most beautiful and well crafted, but also the design that serves its purpose the best. That is what makes it so important. And that is also what we were looking for as a jury, not just well designed work, but also well thought-out application of that work. This was my first year as a jury member, and I saw many submissions that stuck in my head and that I now carry with me, and I think that is a great measure of good design.«

Kat. Book Cover Series. Design: Accolade (BEL)
Kat. Packaging Food & Beverages. Design: Heine Warnecke Design GmbH (GER9

The deadline for submissions in 2018 is February, 16:

https://europeandesign.org/

 

This article was first published in novum 10.17 – you can find there also more images. Single copies: https://novum.graphics/magazin/shop-abo/