I am not my work
Elvira Barriga

Creative Director

Innovation Consultant

Transformation Coach

20 years of international experience in helping organizations clarify their vision, develop their brand strategy, and innovate on their products and experiences.
Design projects include brand identity systems, exhibition design, interactive media installations, branded environments, wayfinding and signage, as well as digital products and print design.
Coach for creative professionals and innovative leaders looking for clarity, transformation, and action steps.
russian federationWORK EXPERIENCE
04/2020 – current Independent Creative Director, Innovation Consultant and Transformation Coach
04/2019 – 04/2020 Sabbatical
02/2016 – 04/2019 Creative Director and Director of the Visual Experience Design Department at Local Projects.
Responsible for the creative leadership of projects at the intersection of design, architecture, storytelling and technology, as well as management and mentorship for the VXD Department.
Projects include: ARoS Public for the ARoS Art Museum in Denmark, the Fashion for Good Center in Amsterdam, the forthcoming Bronx Music Hall and Equal Justice Initiative Museum in Alabama.
04 – 11/2015 Creative Director at Imprint Projects, NYC, a creative agency that develops, programs, designs and produces brand experiences, content, and marketing platforms. Strategies are grounded in real-life causes that connect brands with art, culture, non-profits and communities.
Responsible for the development of creative concepts across a wide range of programs and media: from events and exhibitions to visual identities, print collateral and digital media assets. Leading the design team, defining creative processes, stewarding projects from ideation to implementation and overseeing design executions throughout the company.
Clients include Levi's Commuter, Levi's Music, Levi's Skateboarding, Sonos Studio LA, Casper, Dolby Gallery etc.
2013 – 02/2015 Creative Director for the Brands & Environments team at Bruce Mau Design, Toronto. A group of up to 15 globally selected graphic designers, architects, UX designers, product designers, researchers and managers.
Provided vision and leadership for creative processes, interdisciplinary collaboration and design solutions at the intersection of brands and environments: including brand strategy and positioning, place branding, digital content strategy, visual identities, print and interactive media, signage and wayfinding, exhibition design, retail concepts, and branded corporate environments.
Clients included: Adidas, DX Museum Toronto, Estée Lauder, Givenchy, Harvard University, K11 / New World Development Hong Kong, Penguin, Royal Ontario Museum, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art Beijing, University of Pennsylvania and many more.
2012 Associate Creative Director at Bruce Mau Design, Toronto.
Projects included: 12 branded corporate environments for GE, exhibition concept for the new National Jazz Museum in Harlem, fan experience & wayfinding system for the Sunlife Stadium in Miami, branded environments & wayfinding guidelines for Unilever.
2011 Independent designer and freelance Art Director at Meiré und Meiré, Cologne/Berlin. Led a freelance team on behalf of Meiré and Meiré in order to design and execute the communication concept, print collateral and event graphics for the MINI Coupé Product and Brand Experience (BMW Group) in Frankfurt.
2004 – 2010 Partner at blotto design, Berlin, established 1989 and recognized internationally with numerous design awards. Led blotto design together with four equal partners and responsible for all aspects of running the design studio.
Role included: Developing and executing creative concepts with a focus on visual identities, print products, exhibitions, and web projects; new business development; client relationship managment; client presentations; ensuring that work is completed on time and within budget; guiding freelancers and trainees. Realised an estimated 100 projects for several of the most prominent German museums, international galleries, cultural and government institutions, universities, foundations, publishers, software developers etc;
Clients included: Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany, Barbican Art Gallery London, Berlinale – International Forum of New Cinema, Bregenz Festival House, Contemporary Fine Arts Berlin, European Parliament, Humboldt University Berlin, Jewish Museum Berlin, National Gallery at Hamburger Bahnhof, Technical University Berlin
09/2003 – 12/2003 Freelance Designer at blotto design, Berlin,
09/2001 – 03/2003 Freelance Designer at atelier : doppelpunkt, Berlin
04/2001 – 08/2001 Internship at atelier : doppelpunkt, Berlin

1998 – 2003 University of Applied Sciences Vorarlberg, Austria: Magistra in Media Communications-Design. Diploma thesis: «com.merz.liebe – Concept and Design of an Interactive Narrative». The extract «Interaction as an Aspect of Modern Aesthetics» is published in «Dichtung Digital. A Journal of Art and Culture in Digital Media».
2001 Semester abroad at Berlin University of the Arts › Experimental Media Design › Prof. Joachim Sauter
2000 Workshop with Alan Fletcher at Fabrica, Bentetton’s communication research centre in Treviso, Italy

2012 The stamp design «Diversity in Unity» was selected as the winning submission in the design competition «Stamps for Europe». The stamp was printed in an edition of 640.002 copies and is available in all Austrian post offices.
2009 The poster «Gartenzeit» (Garden Time) was selected as one of the «100 Best Posters of the Year 2008. Germany, Austria and Switzerland»
2009 Finalist for the 17th International Lahti Poster Biennial 2009. Exhibition at the Lahti Art Museum.
2008 The poster «Kaffeetafel» (Coffee table) was nominated for the «German Design Award» › Concept and design with Christiane Hämmerle
2008 The book «Sexarbeit» (Sexwork) was nominated for the «German Design Award» › Concept and design with Heike Grebin
2007 The book «Sexarbeit» (Sexwork) won the 1st Price at «The Most Beautiful German Books 2006» › Concept and design with Heike Grebin
2007 The poster «Kaffeetafel» (Coffee table) was selected as one of the «100 Best Posters of the Year 2006. Germany, Austria and Switzerland › Concept and design with Christiane Hämmerle
2006 The poster «The Legend of the Manifesto of the Communist Party» was selected as one of the «100 Best Posters of the Year 2005. Germany, Austria and Switzerland › Concept and design with the illustrator «Atak» and Ian Warner
2005 The competition catalogue «100 Best Posters 03» was selected as one of «The Most Beautiful German Books 2004» › Concept and design with Ian Warner
2018 Thought at Work, Rochester: "The Creative Leadership Inquiry"
2018 FITC, Toronto: "Facilitating Learning through Storytelling, Design and Technology"
2017 Forum on Technology in Museums, Taipei: "Breaking the Logic of the Everyday. Storytelling at the Intersection of Architecture, Design and Technology"
2017 Adobe Max Conference, Las Vegas: "Storytelling at the Intersection of Architecture, Design and Technology"
2017 Camp Festival, Calgary: "Creative Leadership and the Mental Fitness Center"
2017 Communicating the Museum, Paris: "Taking Art our of the Frame, and into our Lives", with Erlend Høyersten
2016 Storefront for Art and Architecture, NYC: "Manifesto Series: The Sharing Movement"
2016 AIGA, Maine: "Graphic Practices"
2014 Dynamic MTL, Montréal: "Ideation"
2012 College of Environmental Design at the University of California, Berkely: «Graphic Design 101 for Architects»
2012 California College of the Arts: «Graphic Design 101 for Architects»
2010 University of Applied Sciences Vorarlberg and The Austrian Federal Economic Chamber: Public Lecture & Workshop: "Hands on! Posterdesign", with Prof. Heike Grebin
2008 Austrian Typographic Society, Vienna: "Book Design by Blotto Design",with Prof. Heike Grebin
2005 Technical University of Berlin, Department for Architecture: "Typography"

ss 2009 Hamburg University of Applied Sciences › Department Design › Leading the seminar «Behörde für Design» (Authority for Design), where students designed and produced the department’s semester prospectus as well as the visual identity for the end-of-year exhibition.
ws 2007 Berlin University of the Arts › Department of Transmedia Design › Developing and guiding a course on typography for illustrators and communication designers.

ws 2009/08/07 Hamburg University of Applied Sciences › Department Design › Typography (with Prof. Heike Grebin)
ss 2007 Hamburg University of Applied Sciences › Department Design > «Typeradio – Sweet ­Sixteen» (with Prof. Grebin)
ss 2005 Hamburg University of Applied Sciences › Department Design › Editorial Design (with Prof. Grebin)

 References in Publications (Selection)
2014 Experimental Design – Visual Creativity and Method, by Armin Lindauer and Betina Müller, Verlag Niggli AG
2013 Die Presse am Sonntag. 20 Reasons to love Europe. Austrian newspaper, special edition): «10 Questions from Christian Muhr to Elvira Barriga», p.23
2013 Die Presse am Sonntag 27/1/2013 (Austrian newspaper): «The Diversity of the Visual Voice», p.13
2012 ArchitypeReview – A Digital Publication featuring Innovation in World Architecture: «Bruce Mau Design: GE Works»
2011 Page – Magazine for Media Design 05/2011, Ebner Verlag Gmbh & Co. Kg: «Elvira Barriga. What do you read?»
2010 Novum – World of Graphic Design 09/10, Stiebner Verlag: «Showroom: Studio blotto design», p. 56 – 61
2008 Graphic Design Inspiration, by Flo Gaertner and Lars Harmsen, daab
2007 Designer Portraits, by Melchior Imboden, Verlag Niggli AG, Sulgen/Zürich, p. 64 – 67
2007 New Visual Works – German Graphic Style, LiaoNing Technological Publishing Co., p. 58 – 65
2007 Novum – World of Graphic Design 08/07, Stiebner Verlag, p. 54
2005 All Men are Brothers, He Jianping, Berlin, p. 88 – 93
2005 There is no Competition to Us – Design in Berlin, edited by Heinz Hirdina, Helmut Staubach and Matthias Gubig, Vice Versa Verlag, Berlin, p. 44 – 47

Museum Collection The posters «Coffee table» and «The Legend of the Manifesto of the Communist Party» are part of the permanent collection of the Museum of Design Zurich, Switzerland.
2011 Jury member for «100 Best Posters of the Year 2010. Germany, Austria and Switzerland»
2010 Exhibition › 1st Graphic Design Biennale Germany China 2010 › Participation in Xi'an, China and Offenbach am Main, Germany
2009 Jury member › AdWin 2009 › Advertising Price Vorarlberg, Austria
2007 Panel discussion on the role of design in everyday life ›
«Talk Quintet» hosted by Nauka Kirschner › Designmai, Berlin