TYPO Berlin: you only get ahead if you keep moving

The focus of TYPO 2017 is wanderlust, exploring the diversions of the digital working environment, in both the positive and negative sense. On five stages, more than 60 international speakers will give lectures and hold workshops to illuminate how they use digital tools creatively, how digital distractions can lead them astray - and how both those things can provide inspiration.

“You only get ahead if you keep moving.” That is TYPO director Jürgen Siebert’s interpretation of the TYPO 2017 theme, Wanderlust.

“The more we optimize our digital products, the greater the danger that we’ll lose sight of the goal – people. For that reason alone, it’s beneficial to occasionally take a step back and allow yourself a diversion. A creative industry that doesn’t enrich people’s lives is blind in one eye. Wanderlust opens our eyes again,” says Jürgen.

With its new Brand Talks sessions, TYPO 2017 brings brands and agencies together on one stage for the first time in the 22-year history of the conference. While design studios and agencies are the traditional target audience of the Berlin event branding, brand management and communication have become integral parts of it – today more than ever. One-way advertising scattered to a mass audience does not work anymore in the digital world. Nowadays successful brands communicate on an interactive and open basis.

On the second conference day, the Brand Talks will present twelve agency/company teams who explain how this works in 30- minute slots, including Pentagram, johnson banks, as well as the brands Mastercard, Škoda and many more.

The more we optimize our digital products, the greater the danger that we’ll lose sight of the goal – people

Michael Johnson, co-founder and managing director of the London-based agency johnson banks, will hold the keynote speech that opens the Brand Talks. He developed the branding for Think London and many other brands and is a renowned identity consultant. His book, Branding: In Five and a Half Steps, was published in September this year. Throwback to 2013, when Michael thrilled the TYPO audience with a mix of lecture and concert.

Over on the main stage, TYPO also features big names. Erik Spiekermann will be on stage again this year – not as emcee though, but as a speaker. The art historian, information architect, font designer and author has gained international renown with his work for Nokia, Bosch, VW, Deutsche Bahn and many other brands. At TYPO, he will take the conference theme to heart and talk about how he has wandered back and forth between the digital world and the analogue world since 1984, in order to constantly win something new out of it.

Dominic Wilcox is a newcomer to the list of renowned speakers. What the London inventor and designer has to say about this year's motto, Wanderlust, will fascinate the visitors. After all, his most famous products include GPS sneakers which automatically lead the wearer home and a self-driving car as the sleeping car of the future.

The Brazilian designer Rejane dal Bello is known for her bold, colorful and strongly typographical works. At TYPO, she presents her latest project, Earth Art, which conveys the beauty of our planet with the help of Google Earth.

Design Matters, the successful podcast by Debbie Millman, presents designers and entrepreneurs and how they found their vocation.

Jonathan Ford is famous for his provocative lectures that go far beyond the usual status quo. The winner of renowned awards (Cannes Lions, DBA Designs Effectiveness Awards) and founder of the agency pearlfisher is committed to the development of brands and the role that design and innovation have in this process.

Oliver Jeffers, an artist and award-winning children’s book author, who most recently created the visuals for U2, is as much a pioneer in his field as Eike König, founder of the German design collective Hort. Like few others, he lives the concept of wanderlust – constantly on the move, as an artist, teacher, advisor and globetrotter.

With his documentary from the Kingdom of Bhutan, the typographer, designer and author Peter Bil’ak shows us how graphic design fosters the country’s development and how artists help indigenous farmers.

Almost nobody is as fascinated by Asian calligraphy as Aoi Yamaguchi, who is Japanese but lives in the US. In her work, she combines traditional writing with a contemporary dance of expression.

Photographer and director Gary Hustwit will introduce his newest project »Scenic«. It’s a virtual reality studio in Brooklyn, with a focus on VR documentaries and series. Visitors to TYPO Berlin 2017 will have the pleasure of seeing the first clips.

Luke Stockdale has fulfilled a childhood dream with his studio Sideshow, his own signage manufactory. Along with friends, the shop produces handmade displays using both current and historical techniques.

Erik Kessels is among the top creative in the world and the co-founder of the KesselsKramer ad agency in Amsterdam, as well as an artist, curator, journalist and collector. He recently published his newest insights in the book Failed It! How to turn mistakes into ideas. The TYPO stage will be the scene of his lively and entertaining advice on how to “successfully screw up”.

Get tickets to TYPO

A ticket for the TYPO conference includes participation in the workshops. Attendees can choose between 8 different hands-on sessions. The program is rounded off by evening events, like get-togethers, performances, book signing sessions and the big closing party “TYPO Night” on Saturday evening, which will take place in a pool club.

For more information, follow TYPO Berlin on Twitter (@TYPOBER) or subscribe to the TYPO newsletter.

Lead image ©Norman Posselt