The Sound of Beauty
The Sound of Beauty
In January 2022, host broadcaster Rai revealed the theme and concept art for the 66th Eurovision Song Contest.
Turin’s theme is a visual representation of The Sound of Beauty. In order to represent sound and its visual (and beautiful) properties, the design is based on the symmetrical structure and patterns of cymatics – the study of sound wave phenomena.
The term ‘cymatic’ was coined in the 1960s by Hans Jenny, a Swiss scientist and philosopher, derived from the ancient Greek word κῦμα (kyma), which means 'wave’. His experiments showed that if fine powders were placed on a sheet of metal and acoustic wave vibrations were applied to them, these particles were organised into specific patterns.
These patterns, also known as Chladni figures, configure, in the case of harmonic sounds, into symmetrical geometric shapes and compositions, similar to mandala configurations.
The Italian Garden (o ‘Giardini all’Italiana’) was one of the main inspirations for the set design (more on that later…), and it was noticeable that these gardens have a structure similarly present in cymatics. Both are based on symmetry, axial geometry and seem to indicate the principle of an idea of order over nature.
The cymatics in the theme-art visually hint towards both the sun and a cosmic portal that can be opened on the idea of the sound of beauty.
Arsenica is a serif typeface designed by Francesco Canovaro for Zetafonts, and developed by a design team including Mario De Libero, Andrea Tartarelli and Cosimo Lorenzo Pancini.
The design of Arsenica takes its inspiration from Italian poster design at the beginning of the 20th century, a time when typography, lettering and illustration were closely interwoven, pushing on traditional old style letterforms often imbued with Art Nouveau and Deco sensibilities.
Artists like Giorgio Muggiani and Marcello Dudovich illustrated posters for Cinzano, Pirelli, and Rinascente, and provided typographical design for newspapers.
The use of typography is key to further defining the Italian identity of this year’s theme. Poster design and branding are central to the history of Italian design and through typography consolidate the overall Italian look and feel of the event.