Opening Night, TDC59, New York City

The Type Directors Club honored some of the world’s best recent typographic design on Tuesday, July 16 at The Cooper Union in New York City. The honorees included winners of the TDC annual communication and typeface design competitions, as well as student scholarship winners. The TDC was founded in 1946 and its annual competitions, which began in 1955, have grown into the world’s largest competitions dedicated to excellence in the use of typography. This year marks the TDC’s 59th communication design competition and its sixteenth typeface design competition.

The Exhibition can be seen at Cooper Union Gallery 41 Monday-Thursday 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Closed Fri., Sat., Sun.).It’s is open and free to the public.


TDC President Graham Clifford. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

The evening began with the presentation of awards, with TDC President Graham Clifford acting as the master of ceremonies. Graham, who was also chairman of the typeface design competition, and Sean King, chairman of the communication design competition, commented upon the quality of entries, and the difficult job that faced the judges, who were:

Communication Design Judges
Tarek Atrissi
Rietje Becker
Andrew Byrom
Aaron Draplin
Irina Lee
Craig Ward
Alyce Waxman

Typeface Competition Judges
David Berlow
Stephen Coles
Abott Miller
James Montalbano

Focus turned to students, both scholarship winners and those who did well in the competitions. Scholarship winners, who were recommended by their schools, were announced by TDC board member Ina Saltz. They are:

Atif Azam, Parsons The New School, New York
Caleb Brown, School of Visual Arts, New York
Andrea DeMarco, State University of New York (SUNY), New Paltz
George Kalofolias, Vakalo College of Art and Design, Athens, Greece
Cayetano Navarrete, The Cooper Union School of Art, New York
William Shum, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York
Michelle Wang, Pratt Institute, New York

First Place award in the student category went to Stanley Xing Chen, Art Center College of Design.

First Place award in the student category went to Stanley Xing Chen, Art Center College of Design. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

The top winners in the student competition category were then recognized. The First Place student award of $1000 went to Stanley Xing Chen, a student at the Art Center College of Design. Chen designed a rebrand and identity system for the Architecture and Design Museum in Los Angeles. Other student honorees are:

Second Place ($500)
Ivonne Budig, Elias Osiander, Theresa Schauer, and Mia Stevanovic, of the Mediadesign University of Applied Sciences, Münich

Third Place ($300)
Kate Cullinane, of Auckland University of Technology


Best in Show, by Armin Vit. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.


Sean King presented Armin’s video. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

Armin Vit of Under Consideration accepts the TDC 59 Best of Show award from Type Directors Club on Vimeo.

The ceremony culminated in the award for Best in Show, which was given to Armin Vit, of UnderConsideration. His winning entry is a poster commemorating the 2012 Brand New Conference in New York. The poster was a giveaway at the Brand New Conference and is printed in tinted letterpress and gloss foil stamping on heavy red paper. Armin was unable to attend the ceremony, but sent a humorous video in which he wore only his poster…

A list of all the competition winners can be found on the TDC website.

Carol Wahler, Executive Director of the TDC, received a hearty round of applause for her tireless work for the TDC and the competitions. This is her thirtieth TDC competition!


Special Thanks to Executive Director Carol Wahler. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.


Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

TDC members, officers, past officers, and fans of typography then filled the adjacent gallery for a reception in the exhibition of winning entries. This exhibition, with work from 19 countries, is a snapshot of design in our time. Included are a impressive variety of styles, from the austere modernist revival of Mike Joyce’s Swissted posters, to the nineteenth-century complexity of a law firm identity by the office of Kevin Cantrell.

Winners in the Typeface Design Competition. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

Winners in the Typeface Design Competition. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.


Johannes Schwarzer, Theresa Schauer, and Mia Stevanović, student winners from Germany. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.


Rachel Park in the exhibition. Photograph by Catalina Kulczar.

Seven separate collections of the winning work will travel the world in the coming year, from Russia to Taiwan. A catalog of the winners, designed by Chip Kidd, will be published in the winter by Harper Design and is free to all TDC members. The Type Directors Club is grateful for the support of The Cooper Union and Monotype, sponsors of this event. The exhibition will be on view at The Cooper Union from July 16 to August 8, 2013.

Check out the photos on Facebook.

Read about the July 16, 2013 Opening and Awards Presentation on Eye Magazine