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Arja Karhumaa as head of juries at Grafia’s Vuoden Huiput 2020 creative design competition

As head of juries, Aalto University Assistant Professor Arja Karhumaa will lead and supervise the work of a 61-member jury, comprising of design professionals.
Arja Karhumaa. Photo: Evelin Kask
Photo: Evelin Kask

Arja Karhumaa is a graphic designer, Assistant Professor of Visual Communication Design, and the head of the Visual Communication Design MA programme. In addition to teaching, Arja Karhumaa studies the material aspects of language, the situated knowledge of a text designer, and the politics of legibility. She has previously worked in design and advertising agencies as well as an entrepreneur. She has served as a member of jury in several competitions both in Finland and abroad.

Is this a time for competing, asks Arja Karhumaa: ”My theme for this year’s competition is care and caregiving. How could we compete while at the same time care for each other? On the one hand, this difficult year has demonstrated how we are all linked to each other and to our surroundings. On the other hand, at the moment, we are connected through media and technology only. Visual communication and advertising is always creating a presentation of the world, of the one we live in and the one we would like to live in. I encourage all of the jurors to engage in this kind of discussion. What should we care for? What do we want to enhance?”

Grafia’s non-profit Vuoden Huiput is Finland’s most significant creative design competition, which was founded by designers themselves in 1980. The annual event aims to raise the quality of design, strengthen creativity and originality and to promote designers' expertise. The event comprises the competition, a festival, a festive award gala, an exhibition showcasing the awarded works as well as the annual.

The competition consists of 15 series representing different sectors of design. There is also a free series for under 29-year-olds called the Young Creatives as well as the new Wild Card series, in which it's possible to propose innovative work of others, free of charge.

Vuoden Huiput 2020 competition kicks off on 4 January 2021, and the deadline for entries is 22 January at 17.00. Huiput Creative Festival will be organised online on 4 March 2021.  

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