Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Graphis Platinum Award 08-09

Ziad Alkadri, a Lebanese national based in Canada, was commissioned by the New Talent Conservatory committee to design a poster to launch the Rachmaninov Piano Concert 2007, in commemoration of the September 11 World Trade Centre tragedy.
His poster won the Graphis Platinum Award.
The mission of the New Talent Conservatory is to promote talented and young musicians. And the winner of the 2007 Piano Competition gets invited to play a Rachmaninov piano concert in commemoration of the September 11 dramatic events.

Ziad Al Kadri Poster Design
Platinum Graphis award

AA: Could you provide us with a brief about your background and Volt+, your journey through design and advertising?

ZA: I graduated in 1996 from the American University of Beirut and hold a Bachelor of Graphic Design. I have now more than ten years of experience in design and communication, mostly acquired through my work at different local and international design firms in Lebanon, Qatar and Canada. Currently, I work at Xerox/CMHC as a team leader and design services manager. My responsibilities encompass the management and art direction of the creative department. I started Volt Positive in 2003 as an experimental design atelier in Montreal. I think that design should be practiced in an environment where ideas and concept development is the result of the interchange of skills and practices of a group of artists, designers, thinkers, craftsman. Today, Volt Positive is a virtual Atelier, located on the internet, it includes an email address where everyone who is interested- among them are most of Volt Positive clients- in sharing ideas and suggestions is more than welcomed.

AA: Do you submit work to Graphis each year, “giving it a shot” as we say? Or what made you send in this poster design?

ZA: I love Graphis publications. Other than the fact that Graphis have existed for many years, it’s one of my favourite publications since my studies at university. I find their choice for design materials outstanding and most of their work published is real design. Real design has the ability to raise the viewer’s emotions and not just another well-executed and masterfully photographed artwork. So far, I have been published twice in Graphis. The first time was for the Pear Symphony Orchestra logo design (Gold Award) and the second for the New Talent Conservatory piano concert poster design (Platinum Award).

AA: Did you believe in your chances of being recognised and snatching any award?

ZA: I had a feeling the second time, but that feeling was probably because I had won the first time. I must admit that the first award with Graphis was an immense joy.

AA: You belong to a local creative unit and your bio is quite atypical, isn’t it? Therefore, your Platinum Graphis Award is a statement in itself, as it says bluntly that the brain trust for good ideas isn't being held by a few people within the few ad-agency ‘celebs,’ the most awarded creative so on so forth… What do you say?

ZA: All designers have a chance to prove that their work is worthy of being published, awarded or recognised, but most valuable is that it should serve one purpose at least, their and their clients satisfaction.

AA: What a statement like “best awarded agency” sound to you? Do awards generate higher profit?

ZA: I believe that design is first awarded when the designer has succeeded in translating his or her client’s message in such a way that the result would have a strong impact on the emotion and common sense of the target audience. Awards are a proof of good and added value on the artwork performed. It has definitely an impact on the good will of an individual or firm which consequently could have an impact on profits.

AA: Many believe and preach for more “engaged design,” as designers hold enormous power. And with it comes responsibility. What’s your stance on such a statement? Do you believe design is a political act or should act as one?

ZA: As I mentioned earlier, I believe that design is a tool to communicate visually a message and to stir the viewer’s curiosity in a compelling way.
Whether it is a political, social, institutional, corporate or commercial statement a design is about, I definitely agree that it should be engaging, and mostly it should have the power to reflect, alter and recreate a whole community and then a culture.
Our responsibility as designers is to adhere to the ethical and moral norms of the way our culture is driven.


Joseph Hales said...
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Joseph Hales said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joseph Hales said...

Hi, I think Ziad Alkadri's Piano design is one of the best pieces of design I've ever seen. Brilliant, the only solution. However I am struggling to find any more work by him. Does he have a website or portfolio I can see online? Thanks for posting this fabulous work.