Winner of the Olympia 125th Anniversary Competition Announced at Spirit of Summer Fair

17 May 2012

The highly-anticipated winning design in Olympia’s 125th Anniversary art competition has been unveiled. The piece - by Winchester-based graphic designer Paul Hicks - was regarded the unanimous winner by a panel of judges that included artists Rob Ryan and Sanna Annukka, as well as art luminary Paul Stolper and branding agency Form. Paul’s piece forms the fourth in a series that includes commissioned commemorative designs by Peter Blake, Rob Ryan and Sanna Annukka.

Paul Hicks, who operates under the alias 1984, has a passion for branding, typography and illustration. He is inspired by designers such as Paul Rand and artists including Miró and when asked what it meant to win the competition, Paul said: “It’s a huge privilege to be given the opportunity for my work to sit alongside great illustrators like Rob Ryan, Peter Blake and Sanna Annukka.”.

Due to the extremely high quality of the entrants, the judges also awarded a runner up prize. The piece by Lucia Emanuela Curzi draws on the many events that contribute to Olympia’s rich 125 year history. Lucia is a London-based illustrator that has produced commissions for InStyle and Company magazines.

During a reception at the Spirit of Summer Fair the winning artwork was displayed alongside the runner up and prints of the three preceding pieces.

Nigel Nathan, Group Managing Director, EC&O Venues said: “This project is the first of its kind for the venues and we are delighted to have worked with such talented illustrators. The response to our competition has been very positive it gives me great pleasure to officially reveal the winning piece. Congratulations to Paul for his superb contribution.”

Olympia is London’s iconic exhibition, conference and event venue. It opened with the Hippodrome Circus and for 125 years has hosted thousands of events. These include the first ever National Boat Show; the inaugural Ideal Home Show; Olympia, the London International Horse Show; the world’s first computing exhibition, Miss World 1999 and concerts by Jimi Hendrix, the Chemical Brothers and more.

To celebrate this milestone the EC&O Venues’ marketing team commissioned a selection of artists to create their interpretations of Olympia. These works formed the basis of an advertising campaign in industry publications, and featured on the supporting website telling the story of the venue. This in turn was complemented by a Facebook campaign taking advantage of the new Timeline feature to illustrate the landmark moments in Olympia’s history. 

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Claire Kenton
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