Mexico City wants its residents to create their own emoji to communicate across social media platforms.
City Lab (LabCDMX), a city agency that promotes innovation and creativity in Mexico City, launched a competition this week to select 20 emoji that best represent the nation’s capital.
The competition is a part of the Design for the City program, an initiative that explores the relationship between aesthetics and functionality. It’s a precursor to Mexico City’s year-long celebration of being named the 2018 Design Capital of the World by the World Design Organization.
“One of the small contemporary graphic and design revolutions has been the use of emoji as a way of expression, to summarize ideas, emotions, symbols, and representations,” according to a LabCDMX press release. “It seemed interesting for us to be able to make an open call for designers to create an emoji package that addresses what they believe are the most representative symbols in the city, not only its emblems but its local idiosyncrasies as well.”
“Even though Emoji CDMX is a small project, it will undoubtedly be an interesting visual, social, and urban examination of our affects, our symbols, our local idiosyncrasies, with humor and sometimes pain—life in a megalopolis,” said Gabriella Gómez-Mont, the director of LabCDMX.
Mexico City designer Eduardo Salles has already created several emoji that represent Mexico and recently published his proposal on Facebook. Salles could be one of the strongest candidates if he decides to join the competition.
The competition is open until July 17, and the city will announce three winners by July 31. The first place prize is 30,000 pesos (about $1,600).
This piece was originally published on Fusion en Español.