Festival UROBOROS 2020:
Designing in Troubling Times
design-art ONLINE festival 13-16 May 2020
visual identity & animation
co-curator & co-organizator
The first year of the Uroboros Festival chose a theme Designing in Troubling Times (long before the COVID-19 pandemic). Under the circumstances of government measures against spreading of coronavirus, Uroboros Festival decided to become an online festival as one of the first design-related events that reshaped itself into a completely online format. During the 4 days the festival presented participatory works by art/design researchers and practitioners of diverse backgrounds that engage critically, experimentally, and materially with our troubling global conditions, aiming to actuate a positive change.
UROBOROS Festival - Official Opening of the festival @ Zoom
The visual for the first year of the critical design-art festival "UROBOROS: Designing in Troubling Times" aims to communicate the incomprehensibility of today's planetary-scale societal problems and the urgent need to reflect on them in design and art. It does so through the dynamic transitions of abstract shapes, raw pixel details and soothing colors in contrast with the logo’s reflective color. The logo depicts the vicious circle by slowly rotating typographic symbol of the ouroboros - a mythical serpent eating its own tail. The design reacts flexibly to the unexpected transition of the festival to the online environment. It experimentally transfers the visual identity to the virtual space of video calls and online workshops.
The symbol of ouroboros appears on the first promo materials in the form of a generated image, ie. synthetically generated output from neural networks. This synthetic image is framed with a description of the probability of its content, thus referring to the AI recognition algorithms.
The abstract background was created by manipulating parts from the generated imagery, extreme enlargement of individual details into a raw form and the combination of individual elements into organically morphing compositions.
The individual colored organic shapes in the animations merge and morph into each other. This animation represents the incomprehensibility of current planetary problems, their ubiquity, interconnectedness and at the same time their abstractness.
The main element of the website is the abstract animation and the rotation of the festival logo. Animation makes the website look dynamic and gives it a highly distinctive visual.
The festival in its online form existed primarily through the Zoom application, in which individual workshops and lectures took place. Visual identity has therefore naturally been reflected in this digital space. Instead of decorating the walls in the DOX gallery, the visual was transformed into animated or static backgrounds of video calls, which were turned on by the festival organizers. There was one organizer / moderator and a technician at each event, making the visual identity always present and clearly visible.
The design was nominated for the Slovak Design Award 2020 in the category “Digital”.
Graphic Design, Animation: Lenka Hámošová
Web, UX/UI: Lukáš Pilka / BlueGhost
Conceptual Collaboration: Markéta Dolejšová, Lenka Hámošová, Michal Kučerák, Lukáš Pilka
Client: DOX - Centre for Contemporary Art