Our industry body the EEAA (Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia) has announced the finalists for their yearly awards and for the best custom stand category the finalists are:

Best Custom Stand 

Sunshine Coast Destination at ATE by Decorative Events & Exhibitions (sorry, could find no reference image for this stand)
GlaxoSmithKline by Adelaide Expo Hire

GlaxoSmithKline by Adelaide Expo Hire

Tourism Victoria Stand at ATE by Harry The Hirer

Tourism Victoria @ ATE by Harry the Hirer

Vale Exploration at International Geological Conference by ExpoNet

Vale Exploration @ International Geological Conference by Exponet

Being an exhibition designer myself, hand on heart, I can’t comment objectively on the stand designs that have been shortlisted.  I am far too passionate about my own work that I produce to be able to comment with sufficient emotional distance.  But I will say this for looking at the images that have secured a finalist ribbon:

  • Stand themeing is BIG. I know the style of stands Decorative Events produce (even though I could not find a happy snap of their shortlisted stand) and together with the Tourism Victoria stand, it would indicate that the “stage set” style of exhibition design is a current trend in stand building.  This style of stand builds a narrative and display around art pieces, found objects and approach the layout of the space as a “set” and not a “stand”.  This tends to give you a more immersive experience as you relate to these objects better than you might with just architectural shapes that commonly form a stand design.
  • Light design matters.  For both the GlaxoSmithKline and the Vale Exploration stand, striking lighting features are the hero element of the stand.
  • Look at moi!  I would also say that looking at the pictures of the best custom stand finalists, all those designs would encourage me to come onto their stands.  They look interesting. They look different to other exhibitors.  And I think that is what good, successful stand design does.  It encourages you to get your tail onto the stand, to talk the exhibitor, to engage, to pick up their widget and ask to know more, to interact with their touch screen.  And to do more than just walk on by!

I can’t really give you much background on the award criteria as it is all very vague but I’d like to say congratulations to the finalists and all the best in the final judging!

Tune time!  This week I have a little tune from Faith No More.  I am seeing their lead singer Mike Patton next week (insert squeal of delight) at Harvest in his latest incarnation as an Italian crooner Mondo Cane.  I am just a little bit (read: A LOT) excited about this!

See you next week!