Holland Dance Festival – Celebrating the music and movement of dance

Held every two years in The Hague, the Holland Dance Festival presents a prestigious programme showcasing the world’s leading dancers, directors and choreographers. Studio Dumbar designed promotional campaigns for the 1995 and 1997 festivals; the campaigns are now regarded as classics in Dutch design.

Our strategic approach was informed by a desire to reflect the programme of each festival. In 1995 the organisers explored the relationship between music and modern dance; this, combined with a progressive attitude, informed our approach to the visual language and promotional campaigns.

Based on the bold graphic forms of musical scores, our visual palette for the 1995 festival combined typography and photography to create a series of dynamic compositions. Printed in black and white, the posters proved both cost-effective and powerful. For the 1997 campaign we shifted our focus to the skill of individual dancers. Cropped photographs communicate the energy of their performance, while handwritten type suggests both movement and individual artistry.

Studio Dumbar’s campaigns for the 1995 and 1997 festivals are still recognised as groundbreaking. Both attracted critical acclaim and numerous awards, with the 1995 poster series winning the prestigious Rotterdam Design Prize.