#DesignIndaba 2016: Behind the festival’s creative campaign
by MarkLives (@marklives) Every year, Design Indaba’s advertising and marketing campaign is conceptualised anew by The Jupiter Drawing Room Cape Town. We ask creative director, Carla Kreuser, for an overview on the latest refresh of the iconic design festival’s visual identity.
New in 2016
- It’s a creative festival, not a ‘conference’.
- The venue has changed from the corporate Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) to the thespian Artscape Theatre.
- The festival is bigger and better, taking place in five cities in South Africa over a 10-day period
- It is thus a clean slate.
- It gives the opportunity to do something less expected, something abstract, or theatrical — something that will create awe and wonder.
The Design Indaba Conference, one of the most-acclaimed design conferences in the world, underwent a lot of changes in 2015 in its ever-evolving quest for a bigger and better experience. So, too, has the Design Indaba Expo format; it has achieved what it set out to do, so many years ago — to give South African design and designers a platform — and now Design Indaba is exploring what the Expo 2.0 format will be.
With the expo falling away, the conference venue has also changed from CTICC to the more-intimate Artscape. This also gives Design Indaba a chance to own the venue for a full week and stage a conference that is even more of a theatrical and creative experience.
Design Indaba has also strategically rebranded the conference. The Design Indaba Conference, along with any other events that will take place alongside it, now falls under the new “Design Indaba Festival” brand. This new naming structure, allows the Design Indaba Festival to be a more flexible experience/event; while the Design Indaba Conference remains the key event of this festival, additional events such as music performances, secret parties, travelling exhibitions, film fests and even more may be added or edited each year.
There is also a growing emphasis upon growing the Design Indaba brand beyond the live conference in Cape Town, with live simulcasts being broadcast to more cities than ever before: Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Potchefstroom and Windhoek. These live simulcasts are sold out within hours.
To signal all these changes, the Design Indaba Festival needs its own identity, which would live from year to year, even as the annual campaign collateral changes.
Positioning and logo
The positioning is “What is the Design Indaba Festival?”:
- THE annual creative pilgrimage
- where I go to get the purest form of my belief
- and leave feeling re-centred creatively.
And the logo is meant to reflect this positioning in a clear and playful way:
- The mix of established and new: the Design Indaba logo is still the centre, but added to it are the bold letters that spell out “festival”. So, a combination of a creative festival, paired with the inspiring content/conference that Design Indaba is world-renowned for.
- The vision is that the logo stays consistent from year to year, but that the colour scheme and campaign look-and-feel are updated to reflect each year’s campaign theme (and look-and-feel that enhances said theme).
- The feeling of a creative pilgrimage is also clearly communicated in our letters that are drawn to the Design Indaba square, as if it is a magnet. The logo is a flexible one, with the festival letters arranging themselves around Design Indaba in different permutations, depending upon the context in which the logo appears. The festival logo will also be updated with the year that it’s in — 2016, in this year’s case.
- While the Design Indaba Conference is still the key event at the festival, additional events will vary from year to year and get added to the logo as needed.
Creative director: Carla Kreuser