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Photo credit: Dan Monafu (Project Project Collective).

We’re launching a design contest and invite you to Re-Think Your Receipts—$1,000 cash prize

By Susan Johnston on April 13, 2021

Is it a boat? A receipt? Or something completely different? Welcome to the art of transaction documentation, where people redesign receipts, invoices, bills of sale, or paystubs.

Image of a local Farm Boy receipt as a paper boat

Photo credit: Dan Monafu (Project Project Collective).

Apt613 is excited to launch a design contest in partnership with Project Project Collective, a new Ottawa transdisciplinary group organized around doing interesting work together, be it building, producing, creating, promoting, or demolishing.

Re-Think Your Receipts is the first in a series of contests the organizers hope to run on a regular basis, called the Re’imagine series, to support the local creative community and explore how art can be a tool for dialogue.

According to Dan Monafu, a member of Project Project Collective who had the idea for the project, “We hope the Re’imagine series inspires people to make art, or artefacts, that help us see the world around us in new, unexpected, and perhaps subversive ways. And we are starting with reimagining the way we transact with each other as individuals: we want a fresh take on where receipts, invoices, or bills of sale are going or could be going if our economy looked different.” Monafu was inspired by the idea of speculative design. “I’m excited by work that explores possibilities, pushing us to consider preferences over a set of possible futures, and the ways in which the objects we design help or hinder our attempts to build those futures,” says Monafu.

Puzzled? Knowing the project’s theme might leave some folks scratching their heads, Monafu shared a set of examples to help spark ideas. He points to supermarkets that have started to add labels on food products to showcase sustainability efforts, or others highlighting brands owned by equity-seeking groups. “There’s also a Canadian example to throw into the mix, of the hotel trying to be radically transparent about its economic model,” says Monafu.

Then there’s the idea that sparked this contest. According to Monafu, “While some designers have begun rethinking grocery receipts to visualize spending by food category, the Project Project Collective is particularly hungry to see what more of these reimagined transactions could look like today—in 2021 Canada, irrespective of the pandemic.”

The call for submissions is now open, and we’re excited to invite anyone to participate—artists, designers, or creatives of any kind.

Submission criteria:

While the project is grounded in a specific place (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada), any artist that identifies with the artistic challenge is invited to submit.

The artefact (artwork, digital object, etc.) must be:

  • Original, but not necessarily made expressly for this contest (modifying or updating existing work is fine).
  • Medium-agnostic, and in either digital or physical form. (If the artefact exists in physical form, no need to mail it to us—photos of the piece are sufficient.)
  • In the spirit of fostering low submission burden, all we ask you to include is a short artist/designer/creative statement (100 words max) as well as links to any additional information that would help us to get to know you (such as a portfolio or your design or artistic resume).
  • Please submit your artefact to <dan@projectproject.ca>, with a cc to <community@apt613.ca> and a subject line noting your submission (e.g. Re’imagine contest entry).
  • All complete entries will receive a receipt acknowledgement. The winning entry will be contacted at least two weeks prior to a public announcement. We hope the project will spark greater community engagement. The team and jury will propose a few ways to ensure dialogue between the winning piece and the organization (or industry) it is associated with (such as a short blog piece, a possible webinar, etc).

The winning entry will receive a $1,000 CAD prize. Two other honourable mentions will receive $250 each.

Copyright and reproduction rights will be retained by the creator.

The jury will consist of a panel of friends of the Project Project Collective with expertise and interest in various design and artistic forms. The jury will be announced as part of the winning submission.

Submission deadline: June 15, 2021 by midnight EST.


Do you still have questions about the design contest? Please leave a comment below! We’ll get back to you.