This article was originally written in late 2003 and submitted as a paper as part of my Master of Design studies at UTS. If you use this article please acknowledge your source. Note, what were previously footnotes are embedded in the text surrounded by square brackets.
The topic for investigation in this report came about through my happening to read two things relatively close together. First, the Australian Special Issue of the English design magazine Eye (issue 46), and, second, the Australian Graphic Design Association’s (AGDA) Awards Biannual for 2002. This was something of a coincidence, my being six months behind in my reading of Eye meant I was reading issue 46 at the time the biannual appeared, also I do not normally pay much attention to the AGDA awards let alone look at the related book. What really got me thinking though were two comments; one by Rick Poynor in Eye who said that Australian Graphic Design did not seem to be informed by a sense of the place, and the other in the AGDA biannual warning readers that the content was a “graphic depiction of Australian design”. Could Australian graphic design be nothing more than graphic design done in Australia, as Poynor seems to suggest?