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Brand World

Le festival le plus cool du monde

29/05/2015 - par Mark Tungate

Non, ce ne sont pas les Cannes Lions qui sont «le festival le plus cool du monde», selon notre chroniqueur anglais Mark Tungate. C'est OFFF, l'ancien Online Flash Film Festival, à Barcelone. Et ce n'est pas parce qu'il était l'un des speakers cette année qu'il l'affirme !

You’re probably thinking about Cannes already: but if you want to find out what’s going on at the cutting edge of creativity, you probably should attend a somewhat more underground – and far cheaper – festival in Barcelona. OFFF, which celebrated its 15th anniversary last week, started life as the Online Flash Film Festival. Now it’s a forum for ideas and art of all kinds, mostly of the digital variety.


The festival’s founder, Héctor Ayuso, was a Flash film-maker who couldn’t find a place to show his work. So he created one. But these days he says of the festival: «I think people who attend want to see something new, something different. There’s no specific discipline.» He warns speakers not to just show their portfolios. «Talk about your ideas, talk about your process, but make it entertaining.»


This year I was a speaker at OFFF, alongside Vasava Studio, who designed the festival’s 15th anniversary book. Words by me, visuals by them. The introduction was written by a mysterious professor, Dr Urgil Vataar, who was a figment of my imagination but somehow appeared onstage with us. A cooler Pakistani gentleman you will never meet.


But why a book to celebrate a predominantly digital festival? Héctor loves books – his apartment is full of them. He says: «After looking at a screen all week, I love the tactile quality of a book.» Interestingly, it seems as if the physical page is making a comeback. The speaker before us, Michaël Chaize, Adobe’s creative cloud evangelist (yes, that is his real title) showed examples of calligraphy by very young creative talents. To them, he observed, digital is not new. Reaching back into history is more of an adventure.


As I write, I’m preparing to return to OFFF for the second day. The top speaker is graphic design guru Stefan Sagmeister, one of the world’s most inspiring people. Other guests will no doubt turn my brain inside out with their creativity (Swedish designers SNASK for example). Tickets to OFFF cost €119. Save a space in your diary for next year.

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