The Oslo Freedom Forum is a transformative annual conference that brings together the world’s most engaging human rights advocates, artists, tech entrepreneurs, and world leaders to share their stories and brainstorm ways to expand freedom and unleash human potential across the globe. The theme for the 2017 Oslo Freedom Forum was Defending Democracy.
Approached by the Oslo Freedom Forum to comprehensively design all assets for the 2017 conference, YummyColours was tasked with creating a clear, cohesive, impactful visual identity across all conference touchpoints, including its expo site and select public spaces in accordance with the 2017 theme. The project mission was to visually activate the idea that each individual has the power and the solutions to defend democracy.
To bring the concept to visual life across the city and the Oslo Freedom Forum event sites, YummyColours concentrated the overarching theme into four pillars that encompass democratic ideals: Freedom of Expression, Freedom of Association, Free+Fair Elections and Separation of Powers.
A system of red dot icons constituted the main graphic element, where the dot represented each individual as an advocate, a “Freedom Fighter” for democracy. This symbolism functioned as the through-line, tying each activation, project, and visual together as one aspect of the overall narrative concept of defending democracy.
The six-day event engaged more than 2,000 participants across its city-wide sites, with more than 40,000 livecasted coverage views. Buzz of the Oslo Freedom Forum garnered over 236 million social impressions and over 300 pieces of individual press
Client: Human Rights Foundation
Creative Direction: YummyColours
Production: DLX Marketing
Photography: Einar Aslaksen
Screened between forum sessions, a series of interstitial animations was rendered to illustrate the pillars of democracy: Freedom of Expression, Freedom of Association, Free+Fair Elections and Separation of Powers. Employing statistics, geographic representations of these statistics, and posing solutions to the sorts of inequity that anti-democracy yields, the animations illustrated the realistic importance of the Oslo Freedom Forum’s theme and mission. The visual representations, as well as keynotes and speakers titles, were all consistent with YummyColours’ creative direction, color scheme, and the red dot iconography.
For the first time, the forum engaged the public park in downtown Oslo. YummyColours developed a program of activations to involve the civic audience: a live simulcast of the conference; an interactive exhibition, Firewall, contrasting search engine results from Google and the Chinese search engine Baidu; an installation of interactive walls posing provoking questions about democracy, and one that prompted direct engagement with nearly two thousand stickers, which led to the reveal of a message over time. On the forum’s closing night, participants and the public were invited to illuminate the park's central body of water with thousands of floating LED “dots.”
The first day of the Oslo Freedom Forum was dedicated to a discovery fair, at which NGOs and Foundations, Independent Media Outlets, human rights advocates and Fair Tech companies shared their knowledge and discussed solutions to the challenging problems that exist in the world today. YummyColours designed the full layout of the expo, including individual booth structures and set-ups, from construction to visual identity, adhering with the color concept and the red dot iconography.