13 November 2006
Xavier Bermudez, Mexico
Xavier Bermudez, Mexico

(Top) Selected organisers and invitees of the 2nd Iberoamerican Poster Biennial in La Paz, Bolivia, 2005; (Bottom) Presentation of 'The Street' Prize to Pablo German Kunst from Argentina

A recent study published in Mexico has revealed that cultural activities such as the cinema, exhibitions, museums, concerts, biennials and international competitions, in addition to editorial activities that promote reading, represent, in economic terms, 6% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of this country.

It goes without saying that all activity that promotes the mobilisation of people around a goal brings economic benefits to the city in which that mobilisation is taking place. This is especially the case when the activity is of international character, bringing together foreigners and residents of other cities to local hotels and restaurants. There is no doubt that cultural tourism brings with it important benefits to the business community. The Iberoamerican Poster Biennial in Bolivia is just such an activity, simply and candidly intended to promote design.

It is truly admirable and something to be thankful for that there are such initiatives emerging from civil society. In this particular case, a group of professional designers has come together in CATALOGRAFICA, leaving aside their individual interests to work toward building a new space for the practice of design. Graphic design shows itself to be, in this case, a vital tool for the development and organisation of human activities. Between its exhibitions, conferences, seminars and meetings of professionals from various backgrounds, graphic design merits the support of governmental institutions as much as it does initiatives from the private sector. That these same would benefit in the meantime from the heightening of the status of design should be sufficient motivation to invest themselves as sponsors and patrons. These, more than any other, would benefit from professional participation of designers for their visual communication needs, in particular for the development of graphic images with a business orientation as much as an institutional one, highlighting the importance of their presence in the social, economic commercial milieu of Bolivia.

Design professionals in La Paz, under the enthusiastic and impartial direction of designer Ernesto Azcuy, have again demonstrated their interest for their profession by opening spaces of reference for the design profession, where practitioners as well as students have been able to share their experiences with guests of international stature. To do this is to change realities, to inspire enthusiasm and to provoke a passion for their profession in young designers by opening the door to their opinions and permitting them to participate in the construction of their future.

Now it is up to you, directors of communication and design schools, directors of museums, culture houses, centres and institutions, businesspeople, hoteliers, restaurateurs and merchants, to respond to this initiative by making way for design, without hesitation, without bureaucracy and with good faith, subscribing to the enormous force of design in Bolivia.

Democracy is not the vote of the people. It is the participation of all in the spaces that we will be creating under the direction of the specialist in each individual. The designers of the city of La Paz have offered their practice as a tool to transform realities by changing attitudes and incorporating collective participation, which, one way or another, will benefit each one of us with a higher quality of life and coexistence based on respect and collaboration.

A warm hug and wishes for a long life from the Iberoamerican Poster Biennial in Bolivia.

The 2nd Iberoamerican Poster Biennial Results
Cultural Poster Prize:
Renato Aranda, with the poster 'Hommage to Jose Marti' (Mexico)
EUROS 1000.00 and certificate

Sociopolitical Poster Prize:
None awarded

Publicity and/or Commercial Poster Prize:
Jury declares no winners due to poor participation

Unpublished Poster, Theme: 'The Street':
Pablo German Kunst, with his poster 'The Street as Witness' (Argentina)
EUROS 3000.00 and certificate

Honorable Mention in the Unpublished Poster Category, Theme: 'The Street':
Diego F Bolanos Ronquillo, with the poster 'Dragon Children' (Ecuador)

Number of posters entered: 370
Participants: 153
Participating Countries: 16

Selection Jury:
Fernando Pimenta (Brazil)
Xavier Berm dez (Mexico)
Felipe Taborda (Brazil)
Ernesto Azcuy (Cuba)
Valeria Paz (Bolivia)

Affiliated Exhibitions:
Posters of the 90s: "The Cuban Youth Vanguard", Cuba
Posters of Sergio Vega, Bolivia
Posters of Ernesto Azcuy, Cuba
Posters of Felipe Taborda, Brazil
Posters of Fernando Pimenta, Brazil
Posters of Michel Bouvet, France

Special Guest:
Nelson Ponce (Cuba)

About this article
This text was written in September of 2005 on the ocassion of the 2nd Iberoamerican Poster Biennial in La Paz, Bolivia.

About Xavier Bermudez
Born in Mexico City in 1953, Xavier Bermudez Banuelos is both a graphic designer and a musician. He studied Graphic Design at the Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana (UAM) in Mexico, and at the Scuola Politecnica di Design in Milan, Italy, with Bruno Munari, Max Huber and Walter Ballmer. He studied Music at the Conservatory Giussepe Verdi with Glauco Camburzano. He has been professor, lecturer and counsellor for different universities and institutions in Mexico, Spain, Canada, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil, Finland, Poland, France, Bulgaria, and Morocco. In 1977, he founded Troje Taller; in 1987 the magazine, V a Libre; in 1989, Trama Visual A.C.; in 1990, the International Poster Biennial in Mexico; and, in 1997, the magazine, Ludica. His work has been published in specialized international magazines as well as in the book, Who is Who in Graphic Design. Jury member of the Colorado Invitation Poster Exhibition 1993 in the USA, the Stage Poster Triennial in 1996 at Sophia, Bulgaria, the Graphic Design International Biennial, in Ecuador in 2002, the International Biennial of the Poster in Lahti in Finland in 2003 and the Iberoamerican Biennial of the Poster, in Bolivia in 2003, since 1992 he has participated in several relevant international design exhibitions and collections around the globe. He was also part of the project 'Salon Du Cent Homage to Toulouse Lautrec' 2002 and has collaborated in the editing of several important design international publications and books. Nowadays, he works in his studio, Matatena Visual; and runs the International Poster Biennial in Mexico, a project that has been nominated in the past years for the international prize, Principe de Asturias (Prince of Asturias) in Spain.