On Saturday, August 16, the eighth International Reggae Poster Contest exhibition marked a tremendous milestone when opened to the public at the Rototom Reggae University at the 21st Rototom Sunsplash Festival. This world class reggae festival hosts over 280,000 reggae enthusiasts annually from all across Europe and the world.

“I am delighted with the growth we have experienced in our International Reggae Poster Contest exhibitions and contest over the past three years,” said Maria Papaefstathiou, Co-founder, IRPC. “We are proud to feature some of the best reggae posters from around the world and reward them for outstanding graphic designs. We look forward to our continued collaboration with the Rototom Sunsplash organizers as the competition builds momentum globally.”

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The Reggae University came alive with 73 amazing poster designs communicating distinctive interpretations of reggae music from around the world. The exhibition included the top 5 posters from the 2012 collection; posters by winners Alon Braier, Zafer Lehimler, Rosario Nocera, Tomasz Bartz and Taj Francis and 65 others were presented from the 2013 collection including the top placed winners, Balazs Pakozdi from UK, Andrew Cachia from Malta, Lenin Baru Vásquez Felipe from Mexico and Rohan Mitchell from Jamaica.

The IRPC World-A-Reggae exhibition also showcased designs from the competition’s two year history. This extraordinary presentation included contributed works by distinguish designers Charis Tsevis, Maria Papefstathiou from Greece, Dane Thompson DST from the United States and Yossi Lemel from Isreal.

Benicassim,  22/08/2014 - Sunsplash 2014 - REGGAE UNIVERSITY / INTERNATIONAL REGGAE - Photo by Maria Stawska © Rototom 2014

The IRPC presentation was conducted on Friday, August 22, with a talk by founders Michael Thompson and Maria Papaefstathiou. The evening was moderated by Pete Lilly, Editor of Riddim Magazine, and Journalist and Writer David Katz. The presentation highlighted the significance of the exhibition being held at the Reggae University, and the objective to propose a grand vision to establish a reggae museum in Jamaica. This idea for a masterpiece museum and performance space envisioned by the organizers as a Frank Gehry style architecture built on social inclusion for the city of Kingston. It was also important for the organizers to build awareness for Alpha Boys’ School at the festival and to remind those attending, the importance of this foundation institution in the development of Reggae music in Jamaica.

Among the guests attending the presentation at the Rototom Reggae University was the legendary Mrs Patricia Chin founder of Randy’s and VP Records who made the trip to Spain with us. She was also accompanied by VP Records representative Richard Lue and Big magazine Chief Editor Anicee Gaddis from New York City to lend support for the vision and contest.

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Throughout the festival, reggae artists visited the exhibition to admire and share their appreciation for the effort. Reggae singers who visited the exhibition include, Cedric “Congo” Myton of The Congos, Nigerian singer Femi Kuti, Vaughn Benjamin lead singer of Midnight. Reggae Revivalist’s artistes like Chronixx, Jah9, Micah Shemaiah and Infinite were just some of the emerging reggae artist who visited the Reggae University and viewed the posters. The contest organizers were especially delighted by the visit from Chronixx whose current album “Dreadful and Terrible” was designed by the IRPC 2013 second place winner Andrew Cachia of Malta.

The International Reggae Poster Contest Exhibition hosted in Benicàssim, Spain, is a significant platform to present the mission “Toward a Reggae Hall of Fame, Celebrating Great Jamaican Music. The talk was a wonderful opportunity to articulate the vision and the successes.

Many thanks to the hosts and organizers of Rototom Sunsplash, the jurors, contestants, partners and sponsor for making this a success. The IRPC organizers were also honored to receive the generous support and sponsorship of Mrs Patricia Chin and VP Records for this amazing journey to Spain.

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