Iggesund Paperboard has been operating its Black Box Project for almost a year now, with exhibitions in Paris, London, Amsterdam and New York. Iggesund has challenged a number of leading international designers and design agencies to fill a black box of specific dimensions with contents that in some way test the performance of the company’s flagship paperboard, Invercote.


“We’re looking for creative minds who really push the limits of what can be done with Invercote,” explains Carlo Einarsson, Director Market Communications at Iggesund Paperboard. “But the project is also a tribute to all the designers who have chosen Invercote over the years to be the starting point for their fantastic packaging designs.”

He emphasises that the Black Box Project is not like a traditional advertising campaign in which the client expresses detailed wishes and closely supervises the outcome. The designers who have chosen to take part in Iggesund’s project have great freedom. The only stipulation is that they must work with Invercote and create something that reflects their own distinctiveness and Invercote’s possibilities.

“The degree of freedom and the opportunity to create something extraordinary have made it easy to find designers eager to take part,” Einarsson says. “A number of designers have contacted us to say they would like to participate. We are very satisfied with the response so far, both to the exhibitions we have held and to our web pages about the project.

“In a world where the materials for a design project are unfortunately often chosen as a matter of habit, it is important for us to highlight the additional opportunities that Invercote gives designers to fully realise their creative ambitions.”

On 15 November the Black Box Project will present the work of a fifth creator. Designer and illustrator Sebastian Onufszak is based in Augsburg, Germany but is active throughout Europe. His contribution will be unveiled at an event at the Prototyp Museum in Hamburg.

The other exhibitors include the Dutch firm of van Heertum Design, technical magicians who delight in printing with more than 30 colours and varnishes, and who often then add more finishing touches to the awe of technique fans and the despair of production economists. From Paris comes Landor, who elegantly demonstrate how designers break through all boundaries established by their clients. Brunazzi & Associati from Turin carve out a survival kit for pasta lovers that includes both pasta tongs and a colander, both made of paperboard. Marc Benhamou, a Frenchman based in New York, presents his concept of beauty in a new interpretation of the 22 Major Arcana cards from the tarot deck. And Sebastian Onufszak will now add his own contribution to this challenge series. Though still a secret, his concept focuses on the idea of closed loop recycling. 

“This project is an adventure and we don’t really know where it will end,” Einarsson concludes. “But Invercote is the strongest brand on the European paperboard market, and that strength makes it possible for us to try new ways of communicating.” 

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