Designers from more than 30 countries across the globe came together to oppose the war in Ukraine with a powerful art exhibition showcasing 60 print posters and a video display of more than 350 pieces of art. The exhibition, “Designers for Peace,” premiered at UC San Diego Park & Market in November 2022 and included emotional imagery ranging from strong opposition to messages of peace and hope.
“Designers for Peace” was initiated by Graphis, an organization committed to presenting and promoting the work of exceptional talent in design, advertising, photography and art/illustration. In partnership with the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) San Diego Tijuana chapter, the exhibition opened in San Diego at Park & Market and in Tijuana at Casa de la Cultura. On November 16, Park & Market hosted an opening reception with more than 200 guests in attendance. Through November and December, the show remained open to the public.
A jury of prominent international designers selected the final works for the exhibition from more than 400 submissions. Key pieces from the exhibition include (artwork descriptions courtesy of AIGA San Diego Tijuana):
- Bear Kills Dove, Nancy Stahl (US), whose drawing of a bear and dove “centers on the disinformation and brutality that Russia has used to blind its population to the reality of the invasion and the extent of destruction they have committed in Ukraine.”
- Help Ukraine, Carmit Haller, Carmit Design Studio (US), in response to the people of Ukraine calling out in desperation for help, “the poster depicts an image of two hands—one reaching out for help and the other pulling it upwards for salvage with the hands carrying the colors of the Ukrainian flag.”
- Volodymyr Zelensky: Light Will Win the Darkness, Charis Tsevis (Cyprus), is a mosaic portrait of President Zelensky from the very first days of the war. Married and with family in Ukraine, he chose Zelensky because “it’s very unusual to find a leader who is risking his own life and interests to fight for ideals.”
A full list of artwork and video compilation can be found online at: https://www.graphis.com/competition/designers-for-peace-posters/live-viewing/.
UC San Diego Division of Extended Studies was proud to host “Designers for Peace” at Park & Market in partnership with AIGA San Diego Tijuana. As a part of the national AIGA network, the local chapter, which expanded to include the Tijuana design community in 2022, works to advance design as a professional craft, strategic advantage and vital cultural force. AIGA seeks to bring together practitioners, enthusiasts and patrons to amplify the voice of design and create the vision for a collective future. Serving as a social and intellectual hub, Park & Market harnesses the resources of a global university to bring multidisciplinary and culturally informed art and science, technology, civic engagement and lifelong learning opportunities to the San Diego public.
Following its premiere in San Diego and Tijuana, the exhibition opened at Wichita State University in Wichita, KS. The thought-provoking work is available for future exhibitions to continue to bring awareness to the conflict in Ukraine and raise funds for humanitarian relief. Profits go to Ukraine humanitarian aid through José Andres’ World Central Kitchen and International Relief Teams. Those interested in sponsoring or hosting can contact Graphis.