Award-Winning Poster Design: AIGA 35th Anniversary Posters

Editor’s Note: This project won Best of Region for the East in PRINT’s 2017 Regional Design Awards. See all of the winners here, and don’t forget to enter the 2018 Regional Design Awards.


Award-Winning Posters from GDLOFT

There was only one way for AIGA Philadelphia to celebrate its 35th anniversary—by inviting 35 of the area’s most talented designers and firms to create 35 posters for a commemorative collection and exhibition. Among those invitees was design firm GDLOFT, which chose to represent the three-and-a-half decades in the most unusual and visually fascinating way.

“As there are 420 months in 35 years, 420 lines make up the three posters,” says GDLOFT creative director Allan Espiritu. “Each poster contains 140 lines, each representing a month in the AIGA Philadelphia chapter’s history.”

Simple line patterns are embedded with messages and structures that the astute viewer may find. These Easter eggs, laced with cultural references such as David Bowie lyrics, keep the viewer smiling over more than just the design. “We want our audience to slow down and invest time into the works and process the meanings of these hidden cues and phrases,” Espiritu says. “Bowie’s Changes was an obvious choice for us to use for a poster about time. … Bowie is also [a] studio favorite.”

All of the posters that subsequently appeared in the “35X35 Poster Show: Celebrating 35 Years of AIGA Philadelphia” have been added to the AIGA National Archives. For GDLOFT, the project was about discarding the obvious and steering clear of imagery traditionally connected to Philadelphia or AIGA. “We wanted to address the 35th anniversary from another perspective—an idea that wouldn’t be limiting and visuals that could be more open to interpretation,” Espiritu says.

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