The Colour of the Year: Living Coral

INSIGHT • PANTONE COLOUR OF THE YEAR


'Living coral' has been named colour of the year 2019 by the globally renowned colour matching system — but what does that mean?

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Since 2000, the Pantone Institute has chosen a ‘Colour of the Year'. To suggest that our entire culture can be thinking of the same colour at the same time is a difficult task, but Pantone does its research. “We start the year before. We travel all over the world and we talk to people,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Colour Institute, the International Colour Authority. “We look at art exhibits and films and of course fashion. We see a direction...”

The 2019 winner was chosen for its "animating and life-affirming" hue which "energises and enlivens with a softer edge”, according to the official site. The director of Pantone says: “Colour is an equalising lens through which we experience our natural and digital realities and this is particularly true for Living Coral. With consumers craving human interaction and social connection, the humanising and heartening qualities displayed by the convivial PANTONE Living Coral hit a responsive chord.” And according to an article written by CNN Underscored, the colour was chosen to raise awareness to the urgent need to take care of marine life and oceans. They add that “it's a subtle reminder that coral, which is bright and lively, is only possible if it's surrounded by a healthy environment.”

To celebrate the marine tone’s dominance in the design industry this year, Artstein has selected some of its favourite inspiring coral visual references.

Red Peony Princess, Precious Coral Art.

© Maekawa Taizan, Photo: © Kadota Mikiya

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Coral Brooch, circa 1865, ©From the collection of The Henry Ford

“A wealthy young Victorian lady would have purchased this elaborately carved coral brooch as part of a set while touring abroad - likely in Italy. It reflects American travellers' fondness for European souvenirs that served as both personal mementos and public symbols of their gentility and good taste. The piece exemplifies the use of organic forms in Victorian jewellery.” via Google Arts & Culture

© YUN YE

© YUN YE

A Mongolian Coral Inlaid Silver Bracelet from the Qing Dynasty

©Museum of Ethnic Costumes, Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology

© ISSEY MIYAKE

© ISSEY MIYAKE

Photography by LESLIE ZHANG for A Magazine Curated by Simone Rocha

Photography by LESLIE ZHANG for A Magazine Curated by Simone Rocha

Coral Comb/Tiara, 19th century. From the Portuguese Royal Collection, National Palace of Ajuda.

© DGPC/ADF - Luisa Oliveira

Coral Chair by Anthropologie - ©Anthropologie

Coral Chair by Anthropologie - ©Anthropologie

Nicolaas Rubens Wearing a Coral Neckless, c. 1619 by PETER PAUL RUBENSC.

© Albertina, Vienna

Coral and Glass Bead Necklace from between 1900/1950, From the collection of British Museum.

Photo: © Trustees of the British Museum

© PIA RIVEROLA

© PIA RIVEROLA

Ricardo Bofill Architecture

Ricardo Bofill Architecture

Tea Service, by designer Josef Hoffmann1903

Photo: © MAK/Katrin Wisskirchen

From the collection of MAK – Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art

“The tea service which consists of a samovar, a teapot, a cream jug, and a sugar bowl belongs to the earliest objects made in the Wiener Werkstätte. These pieces of work are characterised by the geometrical contours of the objects. Cubes and squares are essential artistic elements which are a feature of Hoffmann’s style in the early beginnings” via Google Arts & Culture

Medea by FREDERICK SANDYS, c. 1866/1868

From the collection of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
©Birmingham Museums Trust

“In Greek mythology Medea, the beautiful sorceress and daughter of the King of Colchis, fell in love with Jason who came in search of the Golden Fleece. In return for her help to steal it, Jason married her and they had two children, Mermerus and Pheres. After the birth of their children Jason divorces her to marry the Greek princess Glauce. In the background of the painting, the boat of her husband Jason is shown sailing away. Heartbroken and enraged, Medea took revenge by killing Glauce and killing her two children in front of him.

Here in the picture she is shown casting a spell to kill Glauce with a dress which burst into flames. She is also pulling off her necklace made of coral, the stone thought to protect children from evil, as hatred overcomes her maternal instinct. The two copulating toads in the front left of the picture could symbolise her husband’s infidelity.

The picture caused much heated debate when it was rejected from the Royal Academy exhibition in 1968, despite being hailed as a masterpiece by many critics.” via Google Arts & Culture

via Unsplash Images

via Unsplash Images

via Unsplash Images

via Unsplash Images

Adobe Stock Image via Livingetc.com

Adobe Stock Image via Livingetc.com

Source Unknown

Source Unknown

Editorial for King Kong Digital © LUCA ANZALONE

Editorial for King Kong Digital © LUCA ANZALONE

© DOAN LY

© DOAN LY

Tall Coral-Red Vase, from the Qing dynasty, 1700-1799

From the collection of Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields.

©Indianapolis Museum of Art

See this object at www.imamuseum.org

Coral-Red Vase.

From the collection of Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields. ©Indianapolis Museum of Art

See this object at www.imamuseum.org

via jalaninterior.com

via jalaninterior.com

Bacchus by FROMENT-MEURICE & FRANÇOIS-DÉSIRÉ

From the collection of The Victoria and Albert Museum ©The Victoria and Albert Museum/

“Coral has been used in jewellery since antiquity. Believed to be an amulet which could protect against the evil eye, it was often worn by children or used in rosaries. In the early 19th century, it began to be exploited in conventional jewellery and became highly fashionable. According to the 19th century French jeweller Henri Vever 'Every day, the coral merchant of H.R.H. Madame, Duchesse d'Angouleme, offers the most elaborate and elegant parures to customers and passers-by: the jewels which are sold there are created with exquisite taste'.

Many 19th century designers used historical styles.

This one is carved with a figure of Bacchus, the Greek god of wine.” - via Google Arts & Culture

© VICTOR STONEM

© VICTOR STONEM

©TISHK BARZANJI

©TISHK BARZANJI

Corals in the Sea by ARGENTINA GONZÁLEZ TAMAMES, 2018, Abstract representation, Watercolour

From the collection of ©Asociación Española de Pintores y Escultores, Madrid

‘Finger accidentally over disposable camera’ by  JP BONINO

‘Finger accidentally over disposable camera’ by JP BONINO

Triumph of the Marine Venus by SEBASTIANO RICCI, c. 1713.

From the collection of The J. Paul Getty Museum, © The J. Paul Getty Museum

“Born from the sea, the mythological goddess Venus sits upon a throne pulled by muscular men and surrounded by her entourage. Her son Cupid flies nearby and grasps a handful of coral from a plate held by an attendant. Perched above Venus, a woman holds a string of pearls, a typical adornment of the goddess. The pearls fall through her hair and down along her shoulder. The composition is arranged in a loose pyramidal shape with Venus at the apex. Sebastiano Ricci used an array of flesh tones to describe and model the playful, graceful figures, from the reddish-brown tanned skin of the athletic men to the light brownish-peach skin of the cherub blowing a conch shell in the lower right-hand corner and the even lighter flesh of the women. Venus's softly painted skin is a creamy white with touches of pink in her cheeks, chest, stomach, and knees; her flesh glows as if lit from within. Against the blue sky, streaks of pink paint describe wispy clouds and fading sunlight. With the Triumph of the Marine Venus, Ricci made a transition from a more classical Baroque style of dramatic gestures, bold colours, and serious subject matter to a more Rococo style of light, pastel colours, elegant, graceful figures, and decorative compositional elements.” via Google Arts & Culture

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Antelope Canyon, Arizona, USA

Photography: Saurabh Suryan – Lokesh Dang for Renesa Architecture Design Interiors

Photography: Saurabh Suryan – Lokesh Dang for Renesa Architecture Design Interiors

Figure of a Fish, by David Webb, c. 1965

From the collection of The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

© The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, The Rienzi Collection, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Harris Masterson III

© QUENTIN DERONZIER

© QUENTIN DERONZIER

© LE FAWNHANK

© LE FAWNHANK

© THIERRY PORTER

© THIERRY PORTER

© DELFINA CARMONA

© DELFINA CARMONA

ATELIER AVEUS    Art Direction by Six N. Five, 3D Design by John Garcia Pons

ATELIER AVEUS

Art Direction by Six N. Five, 3D Design by John Garcia Pons

Source Unknown

Source Unknown

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

Mirror, 18th century, Germany

From the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art

©Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

Folk costume from the Opoczno region, in Poland, Unknown artist.

From the collection of ©The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

© DENISSE ARIANNA PEREZ

Painting by MARK ROTHKO

Painting by MARK ROTHKO

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© YUN YE

© YUN YE

JAIUPUR, INDIA via www.walkmyworld.com.au

JAIUPUR, INDIA via www.walkmyworld.com.au

Snuff bottle, c. 1736/1795, Qing Dynasty, China

From the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art

©Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

A still image from the Grand Budapest Movie directed by WES ANDERSON

A still image from the Grand Budapest Movie directed by WES ANDERSON

© YUN YE

© YUN YE

Samsung QLED 8K - Perfect Reality Agency: R/GA

Art Direction & Development by Six N. Five

3D design: Joan Garcia Pons, Ezequiel Pini and Artur de Menezes

Animation: Lalo Landa

Sound design by CypherAudio

Agent: Eiger Agency

© MAR+VIN

© MAR+VIN

© MAR+VIN

© MAR+VIN

© MAR+VIN

© MAR+VIN