AKTO art&design College and the founders of the International Reggae Poster Contest (IRPC), Michael Thompson and Maria Papaefstathiou, are pleased to announce the opening of the second major IRPC exhibition in the past two months. On 22 November 2012 the renowned art and design school in Athens will open the IRPC exhibition which follows up on the first of its kind at the National Gallery of Jamaica. The exhibition opening in Athens will include the top 100 posters as well as special contributed works from respected designers. Reggae sound system ‘selector’ Hille, who tours internationally with the German sound system, Soundquake, will provide the music for the evening. The opening event is coordinated in conjunction with the Jamaican Consulate in Greece and Consul William Argeros. The exhibition is open to the public. Contemporary art as well as Caribbean music fans and followers of pop culture are encouraged to both see and hear this important milestone on 22 November. Doors open at 7pm. For more information about AKTO visit

The exhibition will continue at AKTO for four-weeks during which time several special events are scheduled to reflect not just the music but the message in modern poster design. Events include a discussion panel on How Design Can Help Spark Change, a silk-screen printing demonstration by Manolis Angelakis from TIND (from which attendees will be invited to take home free editions of silk-screen posters designed by IRPC founder Michael Thompson), and a reggae party at the end of the exhibition hosted by the selector Rankin Johnny. Combining music, art and public awareness, the International Reggae Poster Contest seeks to actively engage people in a discussion through the visual and creative arts.

The objective of the First International Reggae Poster Contest is to promote awareness of reggae music and celebrate its positive impact on the world. The term Reggae invokes not just popular Jamaican musical genres—ska, rocksteady, reggae, dub and dancehall—but all the unique social elements as well. The Jamaican sound system and Alpha Boys School, for example, two institutions that have supported the reggae community over the years are featured prominently in the exhibition. Designers from over 80 countries submitted over 1,000 designs and the exhibition features juried contributions from Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brasil, China, Côte d’Ivoire, Ecuador, Estonia, India, Iran, Jamaica, Libya, Malta, Mexico, Pakistan, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Venezuela and Vietnam. The depth and breadth of the posters featured in the exhibition show the profound impact the music has had on an international level and reflects the positive energy of reggae is alive and well.

Michael Thompson, a Jamaican residing in the United States, and Greek designer, Maria Papaefstathiou, launched the groundbreaking contest 27 December 2011. The submissions window closed in March and a distinguished panel of judges from around the world selected the winners in June—1st Place: Alon Braier (Israel), 2nd Place: Zafer Lehimler (Turkey), 3rd Place: Rosario Nocera (Italy). For additional information about the contest and to view the 100 best posters online please visit In Kingston, Jamaica, the exhibition, which was covered by local and international press, was hailed by Jamaican academic and commentator, Professor Carolyn Cooper, as a dynamic event in which the “powerful word and sound of music are transformed into the equally powerful image and ‘zeen’ of graphic art design.”

More than a contest, founders of the IRPC also have a long term vision in mind—the realization of a Reggae Hall of Fame—to document and bear witness to past achievements as well as the living heritage of reggae music. The IRPC is also a strong supporter of one of Jamaica’s musical success stores, Alpha Boys School, a residential vocational school for at-risk boys aged 8 to 18 years old. In addition to tailoring, agriculture and woodworking, Alpha’s music program has launched the careers of an all star list of reggae music pioneers in ska, rocksteady, dub and reggae including Don Drummond, Leroy ‘Horsemouth’ Wallace, Leroy Smart and Winston ‘Yellowman’ Foster. At the end of the exhibition, the posters will be auctioned to the public with the proceeds to benefit Alpha. The IRPC community is pleased to honor Alpha’s past while contributing to its future.

We invite you to join us.