The Visual Culture Festival KOMBO

The second Visual Culture Festival KOMBO was held with the central theme of Awareness, highlighting the role that designers play in raising awareness in society.

This year’s edition of the Visual Communication Festival KOMBO, held from September 15 to September 19, featured a series of workshops, lectures, and exhibitions in Split. The festival, organized by the Association of Visual Communication Design Students (DVK Association) from Split, highlighted the central theme of Awareness, emphasizing the role that designers play in raising awareness in society.

Awareness is defined as the ability to have information directly accessible, enabling a wide range of behaviors. Designers have a significant responsibility in raising awareness in society, and it is a prerequisite for them to be aware of all aspects of reality: ecological issues, economic flows, social relations, and processes, to predict the effects and consequences of various activities at the regional or global level.

The festival program included lectures by designers from Croatia, Serbia, and Montenegro, student presentations, workshops, and two major exhibitions – “Lito 2020” organized by the Student Association, and “Tolerance” initiated by Mirko Ilić.

The design of the “Awareness” poster is credited to Matija Sandrić.

During the festival, 12 professional designers delivered lectures to younger generations of art and design students: Duška Boban, Dejan Dragosavac “Ruta,” Izvorka Jurić, Damir Gamulin “Gamba,” Slavimir Stojanović “Futro,” Srđa Dragović, Nino Bodač, Luka Smolčić, Dina Milovčić, Ivan Jerkić, and Veljko & Milivoj Popović.

Additionally, three workshops were held within the festival, led by designers Ivan Milas, Kazinoti&Komenda, and Mate Žaja.

The festival opened with the exhibition “Tolerance”, curated by Mirko Ilić.

This socially engaged design project has been on tour since 2017, collecting works from prominent graphic designers worldwide, including Milton Glaser, Seymour Chwast, Peter Bankov, Gunter Rambow, and Niklaus Troxler. Croatian contributors to the exhibition include Boris Bućan, Boris Ljubičić, Dejan Kršić, and Robert Čanak, making a total of 150 posters in the exhibition.

The invitation to tolerance is a response to nationalism, fascism, and xenophobia, which unfortunately are still present in society. The exhibition promotes values of equality, acceptance, and respect for diversity, with the fundamental idea that all people are equal, and there is no place for discrimination in the society we build.

The public urban space, a place accessible to everyone that attracts and gathers a large number of people was selected as the venue for the exhibition. The goal is not only to promote peace and tolerance but also to actively build empathy and encourage critical thinking.

The poster design for the exhibition is credited to Marko Borota.

Photo by Lea Jurčić