Robert L. Peters

27 April 2009

World Graphics Day



The 27th of April is celebrated around the world every year as World Graphics Day (gatherings by designers, exhibitions, etc.)—it marks the birth date of the International Council of Graphic Design Associations (Icograda) in 1963, and it provides an opportunity to recognize communication design and the role our profession plays in today’s world. World Graphics Day was officially inaugurated in 1995 to help further Icograda’s goal of “contributing to greater understanding between people, and helping to build bridges where divides and inequities exist.”

Peace; poster designed in 1985 by venerable Canadian designers Chris Yaneff and Manfred Gotthans, and described by Chris as follows: “We designed the ‘Peace’ poster for the exhibition Images for Survival for the Shoshin Society, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the first use of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. 135 poster designs were selected by leading Graphic Designers in North America and Japan. The joint exhibition of American and Japanese peace posters was shown first at the Hiroshima Museum of Modern Art and then later in Nagasaki Japan, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., Ottawa Canada, Paris, and Moscow. The inspiration for the poster came from a photo my son took while in Nagasaki, Japan, where North American tourists are often greeted with a peace sign by the local young children, as Nagasaki was the target of the second atomic bomb. My associate Manfred Gotthans felt that children showing the peace sign might make an adorable travel poster, but wouldn’t drive home the fatal consequences if mankind doesn’t heed the plea for peace and nuclear disarmament. This is why we used a skeleton (an actual skeleton was photographed for the poster); we felt the poster needs no words. The message is a serious reminder and is comprehensible in any language.”

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