Archive for the ‘russia’ Tag

The Destiny of the Rupee

50-rupee-front

“See, this country, in its days of greatness, when it was the richest nation on earth, was like a zoo. A clean, well-kept, orderly zoo. Everyone in his place, everyone happy. Goldsmiths here. Cowherds here. Landlords there. The man a called Halwai made sweets. The man called a cowherd tended cows. The untouchable cleaned faeces…

… in the old days there were one thousand castes and destinies in India. These days, there are just two castes: Men with Big Bellies, and Men with Small Bellies.”

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga.

school

Indian school via Mad Decent.

India, to the best of my limited knowledge, is a country built on codes and glimmering with symbols – however prismatic.

Soon there will be a new symbol. And it’s already caused some division.

The Indian government has launched a public competition to design a currency symbol for the Rupee. Entrants must be Indian nationals and are required to supply a bank draft of Rs 500 with their applications by 15 April 2009.

From what I’ve read, Indian designers are peeved they have to pay the government to participate. But there’s already spec work up on ‘the internet’.

re-rupee

Indian Rupee spec design by Christian Büning; Design of the Euro.

Erik Spiekermann, founder of FontShop, is “afraid their brief is a little off”. Check out the discussions at Fontblog (in German) and TypeOff.

All the hubbub set me off on a dig. Beyond the obvious (£ Pound/ $ Dollar/ € Euro/ ¥ Yen), I had no idea which currencies bear their own symbol.

Do you?

Here are a few you might not have known:

currency-symbols

Left to right:

Yuan Renminbi (China), Colón (Costa Rica), Rial (Iran), New Sheqel (Israel), Won (South Korea), Naira (Nigeria), Baht (Thailand).

So apart from China, none of the BRIC economies have their own currency symbol. Although Russia’s been searching since 1999.

The majority of nations in South America and the Caribbean bear the $ symbol.

What does any of this mean? Will a new symbol for the Rupee help transform India’s destiny into that of a “nation with Big Bellies”?

And should designers be paying for their crowdsourced work to compete?

Currency symbols elsewhere:

World Currency Symbols index.

– The story of the Euro Symbol: From Logo to Letter.

Bankface? Remixing bank notes.

Ads & Obama: New Low

After Pepsi’s piggybacking I thought the worst was over. I was wrong. So wrong.

duetobama

Duet Ice Cream: Obama by Ravoshod (Russia) via Ads of the World.

Click the image if you want to see this larger. But I hope you get the picture.

This ad is rolling around in a whole new nadir. Low low low.

Can’t believe ice cream has got so tasteless these days. Fat kids and the freshly-dumped will have even more to cry about. How cruel.

Previously:

Pepsi steal Obama’s logo. Or vice-versa?

From/To/Of Russia

Alexander Kosolapov, now based in New York, was born in Moscow.

His assaults on icons and commodity fetishism straddle these two axes with great intelligence and provocation.

(More on Alexander Kosolapov at Designboom.)

The twin dolls in this photographic series by German artist Monica Menez are heading to a picture postcard Russia.

(Via the beautiful blog We Make Money Not Art.)

From 1992 to 1994, Alexey Titarenko shot City of Shadows in St. Petersburg. His long black and white exposures dislodge time and the results are truly moving (via).

So – from Russia, to Russia, of Russia. A country that inspires, agitates and haunts, casting its spectral shadow over the 20th century.

I’d love to visit. And I hope these artists set you off on a journey of your own.