On January 27, the winners of the 38th Annual Interiors Awards were announced at the gala Interiors Awards Breakfast at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York. Presented by Contract Magazine, the awards celebrate great design by honoring winners in 15 project categories of commercial interior architecture and design, as well as the 2017 Designer of the Year and a Design Legend. Pentagram’s Emily Oberman and team created all of the motion graphics for the event, including a title sequence that opened the ceremony and animations introducing each category, and short film profiles of the Designer of the Year, Suzette Subance Ferrier, and Design Legend, Michael Vanderbyl.
The sequences use simple design elements—line and color—to create dynamic animations that introduce each winner in their respective category. The theme of this year’s awards is “Adapt and Elevate,” and the graphics establish a lively and cohesive framework for the experience of the event in a way that pays tribute to the winning works. Each sequence isolates a specific structural detail of its winning design to form a graphic pattern that gradually reveals the winning design and segues into a photographic montage.
“The challenge—and fun—of the project is creating a setting for these extraordinary settings,” says Oberman. “The sequences build a sense of anticipation and surprise, which is crucial for an awards show. We wanted to set off what is special about each of these amazing environments, then get out of their way and let them shine.”
The approach also echoes the clean, modern look of Contract’s branding and editorial design. The new sequences build on the graphics Oberman and her team created for last year’s Interiors Awards. The 2016 intros used a visual language inspired by classic op art geometry and pop art color. This year’s intros go for a more contemporary effect, referencing digitally focused op art and using brighter, more extreme color. Typography is set in Calibre, the magazine’s typeface. Each sequence is accompanied by original music composed by Jacob Rosati.
The event kicked off with a number countdown that helped amp up energy at the Breakfast, which is held in the early morning. The show opened with a title sequence that cuts together graphics from the various category sequences, teasing what’s to come.
“The audience is designers, so the graphics need to be smart and sophisticated,” says Oberman. “And this is a celebration—we wanted to make them playful and fun.”
The team also directed short profiles of Subance, a studio design director at TPG Architecture, who was named Designer of the Year, and Vanderbyl, who was selected as Design Legend. The team spent time with each of the designers and filmed them speaking about their work, giving viewers insight into their design thinking and process.
“We love doing this work. We’re excited to get a chance to continue to evolve the idea next year,” says Oberman.