This is exactly the sort of exhibition that the AIGA National Design Center Gallery does so well: 1) enlist dozens of designers, illustrators, and artists, from all walks of life, and all stages of their careers; 2) give each one the exact same assignment; 3) sit back and watch the amazingness roll in. You see this kind of thing on the internet all the time (often it’s a photoshop challenge, or a “mashup movie poster” contest), and it’s always fun to see how many wildly different ideas and solutions people come up with, even with fairly tight constraints. And even better than a virtual exhibition is a live show… like Bordo Bello, currently on view at the often-overlooked AIGA Flatiron District gallery.
Skate Decks are the Focus of Bordo Bello
The directive for Bordo Bello is, basically, “design a skate deck”, and the challenge is actually a well-established AIGA Colorado tradition (the AIGA, or American Institute of Graphic Arts, is a national outfit, with 67 local chapters). So the exhibition at AIGA NY functions as a kind of Bordo Bello “best-of”, the dozens of decks on display culled from the more than 1000 entries over the years, with enough new designs thrown into the mix to make even Colorado die-hards stoked. This maybe isn’t worth traveling from all over town to see–it won’t take you more than 15 minutes to take it all in–but if you’re a Chelsea, Gramercy, or Flatiron resident, or if you work in the area and are looking for a something different to do at lunch, you should definitely pop in for a look. Of course, skateboard aficionados from all over may find the trip worthwhile… your mileage may vary.
A Variety of Professional and Student Artists, Graphic Designers, and Street Artists are Featured at Bordo Bello
The artists represented in Bordo Bello NY are mostly people who don’t usually have their work shown in a gallery setting, such as student artists from all over the country, as well as professional designers who, no matter how much success they’ve achieved in their field, don’t often (or ever) enjoy this sort of public recognition. There are a handful of nationally recognized names from the graphic design world, as well some pretty famous illustrators and street artists. I liked most of the dozens of decks here, some more than others of course, but really, it’s so great to see how people fill the somewhat oddly-shaped space, and equally cool when they transform their skate deck into altogether different object, such as a snowshoe, or a tongue.
The AIGA National Design Gallery is Hosting Bello Bordo
The Bordo Bello exhibition will be the AIGA gallery through July 3. The AIGA is located on Fifth Avenue between 21st and 22nd Streets, and is open on Monday through Thursday from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and on Friday from 11:00 until 5:00. Admission is free. More info here.