extra/ordinary – 2010 National Architecture Conference

Image making sample

Image making sample

Conference brand, two of ten outcomes

Conference brand, two of ten outcomes

Print ad (provocation ad, homage to Graeme Smith)

Print ad (provocation ad, homage to Graeme Smith)

Print ad

Print ad

As folded DL objects

As folded DL objects

Poster A

Poster A

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Poster B

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Invites fronts 6 kinds

Invites fronts 6 kinds

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Programme liftout poster

Programme liftout poster

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Event programme – 40 page tabloid newspaper

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The volunteers packing the conference bags all 1000

The volunteers packing the conference bags all 1000

Conference bags in waiting

Conference bags in waiting

Conference actions by RMIT and Anoymous crew

Conference actions by RMIT and Anoymous crew

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Conference tea towel

Conference tea towel

Delegate bag

Delegate bag

Conference badges

Conference badges

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Volunteer tees

Volunteer tees

Delegate lanyard

Delegate lanyard

Counter banner

Counter banner

Day 01 programme banner

Day 01 programme banner

Lecturn signing

Lecturn signing

AV title graphic

AV title graphic

2010 AIA National Conference Extra/Ordinary from pixelshifter with Studio Pip and Co. on Vimeo.

The 2010 National Architecture Conference held in Sydney is Australia’s most anticipated forum exploring architecture. The speaker and event programme is put together by a guest creative director who sets the tone of the event. The communication outcomes we have developed have come about in collaboration with this year’s director Melanie Dodd.

The thematic for the conference theme that Ms Dodd put together is as follows:

extra/ordinary will dwell on the culture of the extraordinarily ordinary. As an antidote to the incessant abstractions of globalization, we will be gathering together those who have an enthusiasm for engaging with the contingency of the everyday: inventing new ways of operating; embracing collaborative approaches and initiating direct action on the ground. Producing outcomes that are innovative and utilitarian, provocative and pragmatic. Resolving ordinary problems in extraordinary ways.

Lateral approaches, rather than a perpetuation of the status quo, characterise these overlaps and collaborations in practice. Improvisation is a critical component and contingency rules. Out of the morass of limited budget and intractable problems lies the seed of innovation. Rather than being the product of hopeless compromise, constraint provokes profound transformations at the limits of practice.

2007 Departure Lounge by Timothy Hill, design by Fabio Ongarato Design

2007 Departure Lounge by Timothy Hill, design by Fabio Ongarato Design

In the briefing process we reviewed graphic programmes from past conferences and benchmarked our approach to the communication with an outcome developed in with creative director Timothy Hill and design by Fabio Ongarato Design themed – departure lounge. The colour, playful nature of the graphic along the iconic appeal of Departure Lounge were qualities we felt helped shift perceptions and create a productive mood with architects attending the conference.

The global financial crisis foreshadowed this event. It was anticipated that attendances could be down based upon the recent economic downturn. We were briefed to come up with a programme that was highly visible, cost effective to produce and have a light touch in terms of its sustainablity. The event had close 1000 delegates attending the three days, the break even delegate number was meet one month conference, leaving several weeks for last minute registrations.

Concept rough

Concept rough

In terms of the work, all the outcomes we have developed communicate the idea of extra/ordinary. As a process we presented ordinary and available objects in extraordinary yet simple combinations. Our intention is to create contrast, variation and inventiveness in brands, paper stocks, type choices, images and layout so that every experience is varied yet linked.

The programme of works for the event was carried out over six months. Starting with a multi-faceted brand and image treatment, the project was the applied to a print ad campaign, website, promotional posters, invitations, programme, conference gifts and apparel, signing, av stills and motion graphics – over fifty outcomes some with multiple variations.

The success of any conference is about the mood one sets with the delegates. Architecture is often depicted in an austere, controlled and modern context. Even though many architecture brands share these qualities we felt that these qualities where not appropriate for creating a positive, lively and open mood fit for an intensive three day forum of sharing ideas, views and knowledge.

The final outcomes to be produced for the event included, the banner system, programme and conference AV still and motion graphics which introduced sessions, sponsors and speakers. We chose to use news printing for the programme as it meant we could provide work that could accommodate last minute changes and be printed and delivered in less than three days.

On Wednesday night (14 April), seven days before the conference, we uploaded the 40 page programme artwork. On Thursday morning we woke to the news of the Iceland volcano, that put airways in northern Europe in grid lock and subsequently knocked out half of the international speakers (who ended up telecasting live via satellite).

The motion graphics were being finalised on the weekend in between (17and 18 April), we re briefed digital designer Scott Richie of pixelshifter to start the intro graphic to include a volcano sequence. Mel Dodd the conference director, in passing mentioned that her opening speech would reference the volcano and we felt that it seemed appropriate to reference the volcano as a new graphic element.

Andrew attended the conference in Sydney and oversaw the bump in and bump out of the RMIT foyer actions, documented the conference and attended many of the sessions. The conference concluded last Saturday night (24 April).

The studio has developed many event based programmes and this project is to date the most productive, successful and exciting as body of communication work. An amazing collaboration had taken place, and the studio is indebted to the suppliers, the creative director Mel Dodd, and the team at the Institute – Paddy and Shahana, for putting in place a remarkable, intelligent and productive way of working.

3 comments

3 Comments so far

  1. Vanessa May 3rd, 2010 11:59 am

    Absolutely bonkers. Love it!

  2. Sam May 4th, 2010 11:30 am

    Fantastic! What Great Work!

  3. eric l July 5th, 2010 8:49 pm

    just tweet this awesome work for my “graphic link o’ the day ;-)

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