Milan, food, and a “planetary botanical garden” designed by Jacques Herzog? Where do we sign? There are only 1,578 days ’til Expo 2015, which Milan beat out the Turkish city of Smirne—in what was surely a close competition—to host. The international event, which has already recruited collaborators such as Herzog, Daniel Libeskind, Mark Rylander, and production designer Dante Ferretti, will tackle the theme of “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.” (Something tells us that the planet loves pasta and gelato!) But since winning the bid two years ago, Expo 2015 has been using a temporary logo that is, how you say, molto brutto. It involves a sad little riff on Leonardo’s Vitruvian Man, a globe, and a couple of other logos “When you see a logo within a logo,” a teacher once advised us. “Run.”
Fear not, design fans: the well-fed leaders of Expo 2015 have challenged architecture, graphic design, fashion, and industrial design students (and recent grads) to create a new logo that “must be capable of ‘communicating’ a clear and captivating message to everyone on the important subject of nutrition and the rights of everyone to enjoy a safe and healthy diet and sufficient resources for all the world’s peoples,” said Expo 2015 managing director Giuseppe Sala in a press conference held earlier this month, somehow invoking scare quotes around the word communicating. “Taste, innovation, knowledge, and relationships are the key words that the aspiring participants must keep in mind when formulating their proposals.” The winner will receive 15,000 Euros (approximately $20,000, at current exchange rates) and a runner-up will take home €4,000. Full contest details are here. Meanwhile, Sala recently announced the tastemaker who will select the winner: fashion designer Giorgio Armani.