X·gender is a student project, realized at the Politecnico di Milano.
Throughout history, the concept of gender has been used to define, limit and control people in every way, inside and out, from self-perception to family ties, from social status to civic roles, from behavior models to interpersonal relationships. X·gender was born from the desire to investigate the multiple nuances of the expression of sexual identity, supporting the personal freedom that everyone should have. Measuring against the conventions and rules imposed by today’s society, where everything is categorized and pigeonholed, what x-gender aims to do is going beyond these social labels. “Social label” means a word that is used to catalog a person in a particular social group, often used in a derogatory and discriminatory way. The public is promoted and sensitized towards a fluidity of gender, where everyone can shape themselves to their liking, can create their own being and express it freely, without any external judgment. The work presented is an advertising campaign with the aim of raising awareness and critical sense around this topic.
Message promoted: Gender identity is something that goes beyond those categories that once established are fine forever, because being in direct contact with the personality of each individual, it is extremely subjective and variable conditioned by innumerable factors that lead it to have millions ways of expression. The campaign talks to a young, fresh and dynamic public, openminded and close to cultural and social issues. The project presents a teasing part, where it starts to be expressed the theme faced, and let the people become curious about it. It has outdoor digital billboards and a landing page.
After a certain period of time, x·gender reveals itself, by substituting the outdoor billboards and opening the real website. An Instagram page has been launched, too, in order to collect first-person experiences, told as stories, and to create empathy with the public. At the base of the posters there is the visual technique of photogrammetry, that consists in creating 3D models, in this case of people, from a series of pictures taken all around the person chosen. For the copywriting, the focus is around the word “frame”, that contains different meaning, from the idea of shaping personal identity to the concept of celebrate it. Each poster has a serial number, another reference to the social labelling.
Graphically, the project has a specific aesthetic, with different elements that find a balance together, creating an interesting mix. Regarding the fonts: for logotype applications I used Pilowlava from Velvetyne, a font that seeks a balance between viscous energy and controlled geometry. Pilowlava is used alongside Druk Text Wide from Commercial Type – another design with a strong personality. Its wide presence of black contrasts pretty well with Pilowlava, used in white with a black outline. Anyway, for web applications, Druk Text Wide font has been replaced with another, similar one, that is Improvenu Wide, which was easier to manage.