Kari Piippo (photographer Lucien den Arend

Graphic designer Kari Piippo graduated from the School of Art and Design in 1969. His international career was launched by the first prize in 1971 UNESCO poster competition. Piippo has taught at the University of Art and Design from 1989 to 1997. He has also been a visiting Professor in the Tama Art University (Tokyo) since 1994. Piippo continues to give poster lectures and workshops worldwide.

Kari Piippo specializes in the design of posters, artwork and business graphics. Posters’ simplicity, honesty, and colorful beauty appeal to the viewers regardless of their nationality and background, and thus ensure that the visually coded message is accurately transmitted. Also the trust and regard of colleges speaks highly of Piippo’s expertise.

Kari Piippo's poster course at Luxun Academy of Fine Art in China, 2011

Kari Piippo is one of the most internationally renowned Finnish graphic designers. He has participated in all the major international poster competitions and events either as a designer or as a member of the jury. His work has been repeatedly rewarded by prestigious domestic and foreign awards such as the State Industrial Artist Award, the Graphic Artist of the Year 1990, Pro Finlandia medal 2011, IPB gold medal Mexico 1990, Icograda Excellence Award Chaumont 1990, ITPB 1st Prize Rzeszow 1993, CIIPE 1st Prize Colorado 1999, the Grand Prix Ecoplakat Triennial, Slovakia 2000, two Bronze Awards in the Graphic Designers Poster Exhibition, Ningbo, China 2001, Golden Bee Award 2006 and 1st Prize Poster Biennial Warsaw 2010. Kari Piippo is a member of the world's leading graphic artists and designers association AGI's (Alliance Graphique Internationale).

Graphic Thinking Encounters-seminar 26.4.2007

In his speech Kari Piippo discussed the challenges of graphic design through his own experiences. The basis for creative work and successful design is a good idea. Form can be refined indefinitely, but without a good idea the design does not lead anywhere. For example business graphic design requires intimate knowledge of the company’s history, background and surrounding society.

Graphic designer should also be concerned about how his message is understood. Creating strange and confusing messages is not difficult. There is too much poorly designed visual garbage available. Kari Piippo perfects his own expression by continuous high-speed drawing. Skills grow by repetition and drawing forces one to examine the object closely. Photographs Piippo uses as a memory aid for colors.

homage to toe Shigeo Fukuda | 1932-2009
Kari Piippo: Homage to Shigeo Fukuda, 2010

Katariina Lipsanen


Marjut Pitkänen, Kari Huhtamon Taidesäätiö ja Sari Väyrynen, Lapin yliopisto. Bulletin on the Encounters-seminar.
Merja Vehmas: Top artists trust the idea of the world class university. Lapin Kansa 27.4.2007.

Encounters page
Kari Piippo
Lucien den Arend
Jorma Hautala
Yrjö Kukkapuro
Antero Toikka