At the start of 2020, a global public health event seized people everywhere. Beginning in February and conducted over power station of DESIGN’s (psD) SNS platforms, the emergency public welfare project “psD Against the Epidemic” transforms from an online campaign to an offline event, officially opening in PSA from 2 July to 23 August 2020. The project invited 21 designers and design groups from home and abroad to create epidemic prevention- themed posters, and attempts to draw from the intuitive power of graphic design to spark a shimmer of hope in the midst of a deathly chill.
“psD Against the Epidemic” attempts to take the basic proposition of graphic design as a carrier, growing from the personal experiences of the designers who examined and responded to their individual actions, professional beliefs, public lives and common destiny resulting from the epidemic. With differing nationalities, regions and languages, the designers conveyed the collective reality of an exceptional state through personal recordings in distinct styles. Caught in social isolation, the designers could reflect on the language of design and the information communicated through imagery, revisiting the original intent of poster design. Or inspecting the shifts in their individual lifestyles and habits, designers explored social life under the “new normal”.Others stress positive self-assertion in addressing the matter, and encourage the solidarity and mutual assistance of a global community with a shared future.
This special exhibition continues the original project’s spirit of mobility. The posters are not confined to a fixed exhibition hall, and take on unconventional forms of banners, billboards, shop windows and light boxes. The exhibition unfolds in spaces on three floors of the museum, allowing viewers to encounter the works in the process of walking and stopping to watch.
“Covid-19 is spreading very fast. To stop the virus people need to be united and all respect the safety instructions. A clear, simple and direct message can really motivate people to participate and play their roles. Design can help with that!”
Neo Neo is a Swiss-based studio specializing in art direction and graphic design. It was set up in Geneva by Thuy-An Hoang and Xavier Erni in 2010. Neo Neo partners with artists, cultural institutions as well as private companies to produce creative and contemporary concepts and designs. The studio area of expertise ranges from editorial design, visual identities, typography, posters and all kinds of printed matter to web design, signage systems and scenography. Over the years Thuy-An and Xavier developed a transdisciplinary approach and are now sharing their time between visual communication, curating, publishing and teaching. Since 2011 they have been publishing Poster Tribune a poster-dedicated magazine. In 2015, they launched the Print Program – an exhibition and archive platform dedicated to printed matter and graphic design. Since 2015 they are lecturers at HEAD–Genève, Geneva University of Art and Design.
“Unprecedented current coronavirus pandemic forced us to slow down our frenetic rhythm of life. Made us think about us as a humankind and not only as individuals.
That gives us the unique opportunity to rethink the way we are living, thinking. It makes us realise how small and vulnerable we can be. But most important, I think, it gives us the chance to imagine new possibilities, new paradigms, new ways to interact with nature and with one each other. Possibilities are endless. POSSIBLE IS HERE AND NOW.”
Pablo Lavalley, born in Mexico City (1971), lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland, since 2006. He does art direction, editorial and branding design, stage design and museography, visual communication strategies. Mainly in the field of arts and culture. His work has been published in many international design reviews. His posters have been selected by the International Poster Biennale in Mexico, the International Poster Biennale in Warsaw / Poland, the Trnava Poster Triennial / Slovakia, the Toyama Poster Triennial / Japan and the 100 Beste Plakate / Germany, Austria & Switzerland. oficio is his graphic design studio.