Pantone goes primordial for 2023

Viva Magenta: Pantone has drawn inspiration “from nature and what is real”
Viva Magenta: Pantone has drawn inspiration “from nature and what is real”

Pantone has described its pick for Color of the Year 2023 as a stand-out statement colour that is “rooted in the primordial”.

The chosen colour is Pantone 18-1750 Viva Magenta, and the roll-out also involves a series of brand collaborations as well as an immersive exhibition dubbed ‘The Magentaverse’.

Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute said that Pantone had drawn inspiration “from nature and what is real”, at a time when virtual worlds have become a more prominent part of our daily lives.

Viva Magenta was inspired by the red of cochineal, “one of the most precious dyes belonging to the natural dye family as well as one of the strongest and brightest the world has known”.

“Rooted in the primordial, Pantone 18-1750 Viva Magenta reconnects us to original matter. Invoking the forces of nature, it galvanizes our spirit, helping us to build our inner strength.”

Color of the Year also includes a number of palettes

The brand collaborators include online wallpaper, fabric and home décor marketplace Spoonflower, which is offering special designs by six of its Spoonflower Independent Artists featuring a custom Viva Magenta colour palette. There will also be four Spoonflower Design Challenges beginning this month.

Motorola will produce a special edition of its Motorola Edge Fusion 30 smartphone in Viva Magenta, while parent company Lenovo has expanded the partnership into PCs and tablets. 

Home fitness firm Hydrow will also produce five new colourways of its Wave Rower, including Viva Magenta. “For the first time, users can opt for a rowing machine with an exterior that matches the exuberance and empowerment they feel on the inside when they complete a workout,” Pantone stated.

Pantone has also teamed with creative partner Huge, AI tool Midjourney, and experiential art specialist Artechouse to create an immersive exhibition and “artistic exploration of the Magentaverse” at Art Basel in Miami Beach, USA. 

Pantone has been under fire in printing and graphic arts communities in recent months, after Adobe dropped Pantone Color Libraries from its Creative Cloud suite and Pantone subsequently more than doubled the price of its Pantone Connect plug-in. 

A number of alternative colour systems have gained greater prominence as a result.