08 November 2006
Ulupuh and HDD (Croatia)
Ulupuh and HDD (Croatia)

The Design Day is not only an opportunity for a celebration, but also a time to reconsider our role as the active paricipants in the shaping of the worls we live in, has been proved today by Croatian designers. Two Croatian associations and ICOGRADA members, ULUPUH and HDD, have written and sent a letter to the President, the Prime Minister, the Parliament and all Ministires of their country, as well as addressed the public through the daily press. Tired of seeing their profession always pushed back by the politics, they have decided to raise the question of their country's visual identity, created by politicians and for the politicians, without any regard to design standards or respect for their profession. They have stated the need for a new visual identity of their country, more suited to the contemoporary needs, image and values they wish Croatia to project, and invited the responsible government institutions to collaborate in a joined effort in its creation.

27.04. World Design Day

Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, Mr. President of the Parliament and Ministers,

on this World Design Day we take the opportunity to remind you once again of our profession, our professional responsibility in creating our country's identity and to invite you to collaborate.

The image of a social community, especially the one that wishes itself to be contemporary, modern and an integral part of the world today, and we, as the citizens of this country hold that wish very dear in our hearts, as well as the permanent awareness of it, is presented through its visual codex in the global image of the world.

A country's visual identity presents the sublimation of its longings, statements, its culture and tradition. Accordingly, its visual identity is a crucial means in communication and the first impression it makes on others. The visual identity of Croatia is, sadly, not nearly as designed as are the identities of other west European countries (for instance, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Denmark or Spain), which begins with the official emblems of a country (flag, coat-of-arms etc.), through a wide array of public representations, ending with the signs on the side of a road. Our wish is to elevate the visual identity of our country to the international level and thus to stimulate both the awareness and the interest of the Croatian public, economy and politics for a better designed and thus more effective communication.

Through the rapid downfall of the old boundaries, Europe has become a scene of dramatic changes in the very nature of communications and business relations, which have a direct impact on the task of Croatian designers. Towards this new Europe, Croatian politicians, entrepreneurs and designers must, therefore, create a more efficient communication, which would promote the true Croatian values in a newer, different, more efficient and suitable way than it is done today. We also state that the actual identity of Croatia has not been developed in accordance to the basic design principles, and that it sends out to the world a message quite different from the one most of her citizens would wish for, a message of a free, modern and cultivated European country.

Visual communication today constitutes a primary and a most efficient way of presenting information, since it is direct and universal, needing no translation in speaking the language of all people. We are, as well, becoming more and more a visual society, generations are being brought up on images (television, film, computers) and the so-called new medias are enforcing this domination of the image over the written word each and every day. Visual litteracy is becoming as important as the written one, therefore we are of the opinion that our country should, through all of its visual representations, present a high level of visual culture which it, regretfully, lacks today.

Croatian designers have thus decided to offer their knowledge, experience, skills and talent to those who should be concerned with the social benefits and finally initiate a real process of the building a visual identity more suited to the needs of our country today - from the stately attributes to the search of the individual, authentic Croatian products.

Taking the World Design Day as an opportunity, we are inviting you to join forces and build together a new visual identity of Croatia, in all of its segments, and we ask of you to search the assistance of designers in all of your future endeavours of pondering and acting for the good of our society.

As professionals, we hold high in our esteem every profession and respect it. Accordingly, we ask the same respect for our own profession and expertise. A successfull visual identity is always a result of a good team work, and, therefore, we want to say that we are, as a crucial part of your team in the creation of a better, contemporary and more efficient identity of Croatia, ready and willing to accept the challenge and awaiting your call to collaborate.

Graphic Design Section of ULUPUH
(Croatian Association of Artists of the Applied Arts)
Croatian Design Society