Reflections: OFFF 2017
With 17 years of experience, the OFFF Festival promises a journey in creativity and innovation. We always make a point of attending the event, especially as it’s held right around the corner from our Barcelona studio. This year’s OFFF festival at the beginning of April was an interesting, diverse affair.
Thursday morning brought with it an intense Mediterranean sun that equally matched the enthusiasm of the attendees, many who’d clearly flown in just for the event. El Museu del Disseny (The Design Museum), where the OFFF magic happens, was awash with colourful anti-styled creatives, international languages fluttered through the air, and cold Moritz beer was being knocked back eagerly.
The organisers thoughtfully set up a large outdoor screen so that attendees could watch the presentations - although for a while on Thursday afternoon it didn’t appear to be working. The event was split up into a few main spaces for presentations, and also museum installations, smaller workshops, stands and interactive areas where you could, for example, design and print your own (Moritz) beer bottle label.
The theme this year centered around the senses, more specifically the Sensory Overload Experience, as explained by Outro - the Barcelona based design studio who ran the campaign for the event. They went over the origins behind the theme, how their creative process functions, and ended with their thought-provoking film New Senses.
Shortly after, Adobe introduced Kelli Anderson, an inspiring designer and artist who showcased her recent work, focusing on the tactile world within design; brilliant books that contain basic pinhole cameras and record players!
Leta Sobierajski and Wade Jeffree presented fun and bold projects, explaining to the crowd how, as a couple, they get the best out of combining their personal and professional life whilst still managing to inspire each other.
Anton & Irene were also a highlight for the Elespacio team — they gave a fun talk, presented with amazing rhythm and some great creative tips such as how to push self-initiated projects further. It was a pleasure to see their very-professional work, mainly consisting of their more recent projects.
Other highlights included The Happy Film by Stefan Sagmeister, Lauren Hartstone’s showcase which got a big nod from the crowd, Annie Atkins’ original and very funny presentation (pictured), and Ivan Cash’s work which cleverly explores human connections.
Certain personalities and projects clearly stood out this year, it would have been great to see more presentations and workshops delving deeper into the principal ‘senses’ theme, and more innovation and technological material in general. Let’s see what next year brings, when once again our corner of Barcelona becomes a melting pot for international creative minds.