The Vincent Award 2014
The Vincent Award 2014

An international art prize

The Vincent Award 2014 event identity

art direction and design Nikki van Onna, Johannes Verwoerd (van Onna, Verwoerd)
client Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, Anne de Haij

The Vincent Van Gogh Biennial Award for Contemporary Art in Europe – known for short as ‘the Vincent Award’ – is one of the world’s leading contemporary art prizes. It is awarded to a mid-career artist who lives and/or works in Europe and whose work is regarded as influential on international developments in contemporary art.
Since 2014 the award ceremony for the biennial prize has been held at the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag. An international jury chaired by the Gemeentemuseum’s director, Benno Tempel, selects five nominees from a longlist of artists supplied by a group of correspondents from around Europe. (source:
Three names, a flag and a logo

Nikki van Onna and Johannes Verwoerd designed the communication for the award’s 2014 edition. The backdrop is a take on Rem Koolhaas’s European flag design, which was integrated into the previous edition’s identity. The existing logo was unchanged.

As the prize is allocated to a mid-career artist, the palette is mature yet fresh. All content was displayed on the colourful curtain-like background, creating a clearly recognizable identity whose level of presence could shift as necessary. For external communications and during the award ceremony, for instance, the identity was more dominant than it was for the exhibition. A somewhat dreamy and liquid-like design, the imagery refrained from interfering with the nominees’ work and steered clear of cliché’s surrounding prizes.

Exterior of the Gemeentemuseum Den Haag
When the colours started moving, it evoked the sensation of paint being mixed on a palette
The names of the nominees slowly appeared from the background during the night
Backdrop for the ceremony
Announcement of the winner
The animation functioned as a canon for colours

Exhibition flyer
A golden line runs through the publication

The accompanying jury report featured a golden line – one element subtracted from the ‘curtain’ – running through the publication. When the reader quickly flips through the book, the campaign image unfolds in motion.

Roll over to flip through