ADC Young Guns September 23, 2015
What happens when you bring together nineteen incredible young talents, 350+ friends and fans, a photo booth, a giant GIF-powered wall, about 40 cases of beer and a DJ? If you were at the ADC Gallery last Thursday, you’d know we were talking about the ADC Young Guns 13 Awards Ceremony and Exhibition Party — with heavy emphasis on the word “party”.
The ceremony was to honor the winners of ADC’s global portfolio competition for creative professionals 30 years of age and under. This year’s cgroup of recipients — selected by a jury that broke the Young Guns tradition by including gifted creatives who weren’t necessarily past Young Guns winners themselves — was the smallest class in the awards’ history. But what the class lacked in size, they certainly made up for in talent and energy; the crowd cheered for each winner as they accepted their Cubes.
“Young Guns is not about meeting a quota of winners, but awarding individuals that we unanimously agreed would be the next generation of cultural changing creatives.”
— Nicole Jacek, ADC Young Guns 13 Jury Chair
Squaring Things with Dark Igloo
Speaking of Cubes, one of the unique things about Young Guns is that the Cube is reimagined every single year. This year’s Cube (along with the entire YG13 campaign) was conceived and created by ADC Young Guns X winners Dark Igloo. After hearing about the Cubes’ creation for months (a story you can read about right here) the trophies were finally unveiled to the world at the ceremony.
“The construction of the ADC Young Guns 13 Cube was a long journey,” says Mark Richard Miller, one half of the Dark Igloo duo. “Gathering the relics from past Young Guns, photographing them, annotating them, sharing them with everyone online and so on. But the process behind assembling them was a snap. Chen & Kai, who brought our Cube idea to life, uses this technique to make all sorts of different products. So each cube would be worth well over $500 if they were not already priceless.”
“We had no idea how we’d display the winners names on the cubes,” added Mark’s creative partner Dave Franzese. “After looking at several options, we decided to keep all the information on one side, so the winners could hide the details if they chose, and have a beautiful art object on their desk without the whole ‘look at my trophy’ problem.”
Each YG13 Cube was engraved with one of thirteen different Young Guns logos, representing an artist from each of the thirteen classes. “It was incredible to see new winners excitement; Zipeng Zhu was super excited that he got Faust’s logo,” exclaimed Mark. “People really picked up on the diversity of both the Cubes and the winners. That was always a huge goal going into this: summarizing a competition that welcomes all disciplines. People could tell right away that Cubes had parts of cameras, pencils, keyboards, old studio knick knacks and so many other things that represent Young Guns.”
The Young Guns 13 Cubes were not the only honors awarded that evening. For the second year in a row, ADC partnered with renowned New York and LA-based artist management agency Levine/Leavitt, to present the Artist-In-Residence Award. This year the honor went to letterer and illustrator Gemma O’Brien. Unfortunately the Sydney-based Gemma was unable to receive the honor in person, so she sent along an acceptance video for the crowd.
After all of the awards were presented, our DJ, lovingly brought to us by Apollo Studios, turned the volume up to 11 and the party got started in earnest. ADC Global Partner Shutterstock captured everyone in their flashy photo booth, and GIPHY unleashed their “Gif Dance Party” on the masses, incorporating everyone’s fancy footwork into a melange of awesomeness, projected on a floor-to-ceiling screen. Throw in plenty of gourmet pizza, sandwiches and free-flowing beer, and you had a Young Guns party to remember (or forget, depending on how much of the aforementioned beer you drank.)
“Young Guns is a cornerstone in ADC’s commitment to the next generation of creative professionals,” said Philippe Meunier, ADC Board of Directors President. “We are honored to have this year’s collection of young professionals join this ever-growing group of superstar creatives. Thanks to Jeff Levine and Levine/Leavitt for supporting us with the Artist-In-Residence Award, Dark Igloo and Chen & Kai for the incredible Cubes, GIPHY and Apollo Studios for creating such a party atmosphere, and of course Shutterstock for everything they do for the organization.”
Stay tuned for Young Guns 14!