Graphex National Design Awards

Canada's biennial National design awards. An Icograda-endorsed event, Graphex has been celebrating the best of visual communications in Canada since 1977.

Graphex is a national design competition that has been celebrating the best of visual communications in Canada since 1977. Initially a British Columbia-only initiative, it became a national programme in 2000. The primary goals of Graphex are to promote the value of design to the Canadian public and business community and to create an archive of Canadian design for future generations to study and reflect upon.

Every two years Graphex invites professional communication designers, web designers, typographers, photographers, illustrators, art directors, ad agencies, printers, writers and clients from across Canada to submit their very best published cultural, social and business communications in all mediums. As part of the GDC’s mandate to create an ongoing archive of Canadian design, Graphex is a national event, open to all Canadians, with discounts given to professional members of design associations such as GDC, RGD Ontario and SDGQ.

All submissions are accompanied by an explanation of the design criteria stating the challenges and requirements of the project and the rationale for the design solution. At the conclusion of the competition phase, a traveling exhibit of the winners tours Canada and beyond showcasing the work to the public.

Graphex 2010
The winners were announced at the closing party for Icograda Design Week Vancouver in April 2010.

Graphex 2010 Judges:

  • Julia Hoffmann, creative director, MOMA, New York NY
  • Louise Fili, designer, New York NY
  • Mark Randall, president, World Studio, New York NY
  • Matt Warburton, designer, Emdoubleyu Design, Vancouver BC
  • Rolando Diep, creative director, Landor Associates Latin America, Mexico City
  • Click here to visit the Graphex 2010 website.

Graphex 2008
The theme for Graphex 2008 was built around the theory, structure and visual language of the tournament ladder and the concept of zeitgeist. The graphic language is very much about info-graphics with many items on the left side representing the “input”, or distillation process down to one final selection (the winner or the solution), while the right side represents the winner or solution’s impact on society. The purpose of this theme is to carry the idea throughout all the promotional pieces as a way to not only express aspects of the competition itself (like a tournament), but to educate, inform and inspire that great creative can have a larger impact on society than we often realize.

Graphex 2008 Judges:

  • Sam Carter, historian, ECUAD, Vancouver, BC
  • Jamie Koval, creative director, VSA Partners, Chicago IL
  • Peter Steiner, designer, Gottschalk + Ash Int'l, Montreal QC
  • Stanley Hainsworth, brand director, Starbucks, Seattle WA
  • Ronald Kapaz, designer, Oz Design, Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Michael Jager, creative director, JDK Design, Burlington VT
  • Marian Bantjes, graphic artist, Bowen Island BC

Graphex 2006 Judges:

  • Rick Poynor, writer, London UK
  • Min Wang, design educator, Beijing, China
  • Debbie Millman, designer, Sterling Brands, New York NY
  • Tan Le, designer, Wongdoody, Seattle WA
  • Robert Sarner, director of communications & PR, Roots Canada, Toronto ON

Graphex 2003 Judges:

  • Robert L. Peters, designer, Circle Design, Winnipeg MB
  • George Fok, designer, Epoxy, Montreal QC
  • Delphine Hirasuna, writer, San Francisco CA
  • Terry Irwin, designer, San Francisco CA
  • Paul Tew, brand director, Nike, Portland OR

Graphex 2000
In honour of the 2000 National AGM being held in Vancouver and the Environs National Design Conference, Graphex 2000 was a national event for the very first time.

Graphex 2000 Judges:

  • Bill Cahan, Cahan & Associates, San Francisco CA
  • Colin Watson, Levis Strausse & Co., San Francisco CA
  • Rick Poynor, writer, Twickenham, England
  • Rita Sasges, Sasges Design Partnership, Calgary AB