• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

HSE Art and Design School Alumnae Win Russian Post Design Competition

HSE Art and Design School Alumnae Win Russian Post Design Competition

© Photo courtesy of Alena Akmatova

Alena Akmatova and Svetlana Ilyushina, graduates of the HSE Art and Design School Master’s programme (2017), won the open Russian Post competition, which was held jointly with the Novgorod regional government and the Novgorod State Museum-Reserve in the autumn of 2020. Participants had to design a series of limited edition postcards and packaging dedicated to the cultural and historical heritage of the region.

The ‘Millennium of Russia’ monument, the Novgorod Kremlin and the Belelyubskiy Bridge in Borovichi are landmarks of Veliky Novgorod. Using images of these historical sites, the Russian Post competition required participants to come up with designs for mailing boxes, packages, envelopes, postcards, and packing tape. ‘We quickly shared responsibilities and started looking for the right style for the project,’ says Svetlana Ilyushina, a graduate of the HSE Art and Design School, and winner of the competition. ‘We wanted the objects to look simple, but at the same time we didn’t want them to lose their grandeur.’

Svetlana Ilyushina
Photo courtesy of Svetlana Ilyushina

Svetlana and Alena divided the tasks according to their professional interests. As an illustrator, Svetlana was responsible for drawing all the landmarks for the project. Alena, a graphic designer, was in charge of layout, colour selection, and the placement of images on various types of media, from mailing boxes to packing tape.

The two were inspired by the colourful world of American illustrator Calvin Sprague. That said, the HSE Art and Design School graduates tried to reflect the warmth and comfort of the Novgorod region in their works. ‘Since the colour scheme of the Russian Post is limited to shades of blue, it was not easy to convey all the brightness and whirlwind of colours of Veliky Novgorod,’ admits Svetlana. The only objects for which there were no colour restrictions were the postcards.

‘In the postcard design we played with colours a little bit and added some rich red, orange and light blue to the standard blue,’ Alena says. ‘And it shone in the sunlight, and we felt even more warmth. In addition, through decorative elements — trees, clouds and patterns — we combined three cultural objects in a graphic image.’

Alena Akmatova
Photo courtesy of Alena Akmatova

As a result, the jury commended their work, and in January 2021, the Russian Post launched a series of packaging designed by Svetlana and Alena—one million postcards, packages and boxes.

‘The Russian Post brand is very fresh. It has been changing a lot lately, which is why we decided to participate in the development of its graphic communication. In addition, to get a ready circulation of products with your design is pleasing and important in our work,’ says Alena.

The graduates now work as freelancers in graphic design and illustration. While still in graduate school, they teamed up with two other students and created the onefs.design group. Alena and Svetlana note that this was made possible thanks to their studies at HSE University: ‘The knowledge and skills gained at the HSE Art and Design School helped a lot. For us, for example, it was unclear how to put together a design, what to focus on initially. Using our acquired skills, we were able to form a clear and coherent system in our heads.’ Alena says that studying at HSE University helped to give her a better conscious understanding of design: from logo development to corporate identity. ‘HSE University has its own atmosphere — it’s very kind and warm,’ she recalls. ‘We liked to work late in our classrooms, because the process was very interesting, and it was easier (and more fun!) to find a solution to a problem with the team.’

Now, before starting another project, the girls analyse whom it’s for and why. ‘From the design lecture course, we learned about all the global designers and styles in communicating design,’ adds Svetlana. ‘And, of course, we started to feel more confident in graphic software. We aren’t afraid to make mistakes — they might even come in handy as inspiration for a future project.’

See also:

‘Over the Past Four Years, the Students Matured into Full-fledged Artists’

Eight graduates of the 2021 Bachelor's programme in Design and Contemporary Art at the HSE Art and Design School presented their projects at the Diploma21 exhibition, which recently opened at the HSE ART GALLERY. Each installation is the culmination of a whole year of work by the artists, who reflect on different themes, explore, criticise, and construct a specific language of communication.

Summer School of Design to Be Held in St Petersburg

The HSE Art and Design School in St Petersburg is launching the Summer School of Design, a new urban educational project for those interested in design and visual art. The school, which is organised with support from the government of St Petersburg, will be held online on July 4–10 and will offer first-level courses in seven design disciplines.

‘Plain. Volume. Movement’. Artist Alisa Gorshenina Organised a Master Class at HSE Art and Design School

A master class by the artist Alisa Gorshenina took place in HSE Art and Design School in March. Over three days participants created their works, using stop motion animation techniques under Alisa's guidance. This article offers a look at the resulting work and shares some of Alisa and the participants’ impressions of the master class.

Modern Art on Ice: HSE Business Incubator Launches ArtBotMoscow

Artists and designers from anywhere in the world will be able to display their work on the ice of Chistye Prudy in the centre of Moscow. Those interested should take part in the ArtBotMoscow competition organised by the HSE University Business Incubator. The winning sketch will be printed on the ice by a robot.

HSE Art and Design School Takes First Place in World Brand Design Society Ranking

In 2021/22, the World Brand Design Society (WBDS) announced the results of their competition programme. According to the selection and voting results on the award website, HSE Art and Design School has topped the Global Ranking and become the educational institution of the year. In total, students from the HSE Art and Design School scored 53 points and won 22 individual awards: 2 Gold, 6 Silver, 11 Bronze and 3 Honorable Mentions by the jury.

‘A Delicate Fractal’: What Our Present Looks Like in the Future

In December, ‘A Delicate Fractal’ exhibition by Protey Temen, co-founder of the HSE Art and Design School opened in HSE ART GALLERY. The objects, graphics, video and multimedia installation presented here are part of a larger project ‘The Inner School of Open Studies’, in which the artist studies the subtle connections and intersections between science, random moments and the poetry of everyday life. The exhibition is open until February 6th, 2022.

HSE University and UN to Cooperate on Competition

The BRICS Competition Law and Policy Centre at HSE University and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) have signed a memorandum of understanding. The agreement is aimed at developing cooperation between UNCTAD and HSE University in the field of competition, with a focus on the problems posed by cross-border cartels.

‘Mumiy Troll’ Band Launches Video Created by Student of HSE Art and Design School

An animated video for the song ‘Time for Resentment’ by Mumiy Troll has been posted on the band’s official website. Athena Zhurba, 3rd-year Animation and Illustration student and author of the concept, directed this video.

The Misadventures of Soviet Furniture

In the late 1950s, Soviet designers created something unprecedented in the Soviet Union — lightweight, modular furniture for the entire apartment. However, their progressive take on interior design clashed with reality. The system trumped common sense, with the result that the best entries in the first national competition for furniture designers remained little more than good intentions. HSE University Art and Design School instructor Artyom Dezhurko studied the history of the competition. 

‘To Read Such Papers, International Scholars Will Likely Want to Learn Russian’

The results of the competition for the best academic and popular science papers in Russian by HSE staff members have been announced. This competition is a new one, organized by the university to celebrate the Year of Science and Technology. 257 applications were submitted, with 35 winners announced in the academic category and 30 in the popular science one. The winners were announced on Alexander Pushkin’s birthday. The organizers plan to make the competition annual, potentially opening it up for all Russian and international researchers writing papers and involved in science communication in Russian.