Home > Read > News >
Torino: World Design Capital 2008


The nomination of the City of Torino as the first World Design Capital is welcomed as an important opportunity to design new ways to develop the territory.

On September 30, 2005, ICSID (International Council of Societies of Industrial Design) officially named the city of Torino the first World Design Capital in recognition of the crucial role Torino and Piemonte play on an international level. The area is characterized by numerous excellences in the field of design. Today, it is involved in a planning process to renew Torino’s image from an industrial city to a European city, in which development is based on a combination of innovation and creativity, starting with a solid tradition of entrepreneurship and planning. In accepting this challenge, the city of Torino is proud to be a “beta-tester” of the World Design Capital project, which is promoted by the International Design Alliance (IDA) and conducted by ICSID. This unprecedented title is thus welcomed as an important opportunity to design new ways to develop the territory.



The concept of the visual identity of Torino 2008 World Design Capital

A large-scale event is like an extreme architecture, hard to imagine, to programme, to use. Large scale is based upon freedom and appropriate matching of most different things. It can favour authentic, new relationships between functional interventions that widen our identity instead of limiting it. Large scale can and must spark a “complexity regime” that brings along the full expression of design while spawning a whole lot of mutations as a new kind of programme, far more rich, extraordinary, smart and debunking.

This is the reason why Torino 2008 has chosen to involve different designers, each of them producing a specific medium for the event, thus defining a new method and a new aesthethics – a wide range of artworks in a deliberate free style.

There will be many elements coexisting in flexible relationships, in an amazing organisational diversity. Anyone of these artworks, every now and then, can succeed. Then suddenly their intensity is equal, as this process follows a constant, organic flow of equalisation.

The tension increase and the event becomes a landscape.

This is the landscape of the large-scale event, and of Torino 2008 in particular. It must withstand visual unification, the indifference of perceptions, and the risk of creating completely free area.



Green is the colour

Torino 2008 World Design Capital has chosen green as its colour. The choice of this colour is motivated by scientific and historical reasons, as well as by competitive factors and current trends.

First of all, the scientific and sensorial reason.

Every colour produces an infinite range of sensations.

The frequency associated with the colour green occupies a central position on the scale of human visual perception. Green is the “visual place” to which the human eye is most sensitive and, thus, able to perceive the most differences.

This is why Torino 2008 visual communication is not using one single shade of green, based on a precise combination of colours, but rather a wide spectrum of greens that is flexible and changeable.

Each event, each medium, each communication item will be “wearing” a different and new shade of green for every occasion.

“Another green colour” is the slogan featuring on all support material, followed by the Pantone colour code (or the respective chromatic percentage) used in each specific case. The phrase itself is a reference to the album Another Green World by Brian Eno (1975).

Other good reasons back up the choice of the colour green.

It is a new colour for the city. Torino has always been associated with blue and yellow: green represents their combination. Recently, the city has coloured itself white, for the Olympics, and then red, as a reminder to its citizens that ‘passion lives here’.

The green – the multitude of shades of green – representing Torino 2008 is an element that will set it apart in the world of international design events, in which the predominant colour is still red.

Importantly, green, besides being the colour of reason, also hints at “green design” and environmental sustainability, two important themes for reflection.



Source: World Design Capital – Torino 2008


Limitations and distractions are hidden blessings

Nigel Sielegar