Isabel Inhoven's profile

Swatch Nines — event identity concepts


including Wordmark / logotype design
Colour scheme / typography / Layout
Event Poster Designs / visuals / imagery
collaterals / merch

Throughout its 15-year history, the event series known over the years as The Nine Knights, Queens, Royals, The [Audi] Nines and lastly [Swatch] Nines has undergone many transformations — from a small regional happening for freestyle skiers to an internationally ­recognised, multi-disciplinary action sports series. In winter, epic snow park setups in extraordinary locations are amped up by star-studded lineups of skiers and snowboarders. In summer, professional world-class freeride mountain bikers push their limits on extraordinary features in adrenaline-fuelled settings.

Bolstered by a new title sponsor, a new name and location, the Nines team sought fresh perspectives and new directions, looking to continue pushing to new levels of creativity, progression and excitement. The brief was to find a new identity inspired by Retro ­Futurism with a contemporary feel — an identity that draws inspiration from the past and the event's origins in order to move forward.

The aim was to close the visual gap between setup design, identity design and retro-futuristic worlds ­featuring faded colours, bizarre and ­utopian themes. Central to this was the creation organic ­spaces, ­immer­sive frames / windows [into the Nines universe] and geometrical shapes in line with their iconic setup design [which has moved away from hard angles to more organic, Zaha Hadid and Steven Holl inspired flowy features, bowls, viewer levels and windows over the past few years].

For the [changing] event locations Adobe Originals Source Code ­Medium is suggested. The pairing of Max Miedinger’s Nimbus Sans [for body text] with Ryoichi Tsunekawa’s Kaneda Gothic [for headlines] balances the nostalgic, retro-­futuristic aesthetic and the contemporary demands of the Nines. Additionally, the narrow nature of Kaneda Gothic, which alludes the futuristic 1980s and 1990s images of giant metropolises, suits the condensed forms of the various logotype concepts.

Not just the typography, also the colour palette draws ­inspiration from both retro-futuristic imagery and the iconic 1990s, the ­golden era of freestyle and the time of the colourful Swatch craze. The ­faded neon pastel hues exude this 1990s old-school vibe and are highly flexible on their own subtle yet bold, when ­combined remarkably vibrant. Therefore, the colours also act as a metaphor for the event’s contemporary energy and diversity.

The vertical logotype versions allude the shape of a wristwatch — hinting at the title sponsor Swatch.
Poster concept [SKI – public days poster / colour version] — logotype concept inspired by the typography on 1990s Swatch clock faces.
Inspired by the setup design, this logotype ­concept is an ode to both the Nine’s medieval themed origins [i.e. ‘The Return­ of the Nine Knights’] and its retro-futuristic vibe. The vertical logotype version alludes the shape of a wristwatch — hinting at the title sponsor Swatch.
Logotype concepts / poster concept [MTB event / colour version]. Textures and overlays add a vintage, utopian feel to the event photography.
Poster concept [MTB event / black and white version]. Overlays and distortion effects add a vintage, utopian feel to the event photography.
Swatch Nines — event identity concepts


Swatch Nines — event identity concepts