history of the archive

In 1991, Icograda's Founding President Willy de Majo set up an Archive Steering Committee for the International Design Archive and Research Centre Project, which was formally launched at the Glasgow International Design Renaissance Congress in September 1993. In 1996, the Committee released a policy document which sought to develop the projected archive in digital form: 'Digital Immortality: Encapsulating the Work of the World's Top Twentieth Century Designers'.

The primary objectives were to set up an Archive network and to establish a comprehensive Icograda Archive, thus retaining a cultural history of contemporary graphic design with the goal of making archives available as a teaching tool for generations to come.

In 1993, the Icograda Archive Committee (Nicholas Jenkins, David Playne, Mike Hope, Anne Lowthian, John Miles, James Pilditch and Teal Triggs) produced a CD-ROM about FHK Henrion. It also produced video interviews with a number of leading designers for future development as part of the archive project.

Following a visit to the University of Brighton, it was felt that the Icograda Archive's aims were largely synonymous with those of the University which also offered the material resources of a design archive, supported by full-time curatorial staff, with considerable experience in digital archival developments and a good track record of attracting funds for allied research and development.

In 2010 the University of Brighton Design Archives were awarded funding from the Higher Education Funding Council for England Museum, Galleries and Collections fund in recognition of the international significance of its research and holdings.