Two of DPG Media’s news brands, De Volkskrant and Weekendavisen, can call themselves the World’s Best Designed Newspapers of 2020. Our brands surpass international top players such as The New York Times, Die Zeit and The Washington Post.
The two newspapers were chosen from five finalists by the international news organization Society for News Design (SND). “These newspapers acknowledge that the ubiquity of online content does not make print superfluous, but rather avant-garde. They know how to use their design in exciting and creative ways, making the print product indispensable”, the jury report reads.
The Danish weekly newspaper Weekendavisen, a paper that mainly focuses on in-depth articles, got redesigned in 2020. “What stands out most is the mix of modernity and legacy”, the jury explains. “The combination of solid news design and little ‘jazz riffs’ makes the newspaper bold, ambitious and playful. The design is thoughtful and it contains a subtle sense of humour in the visual details. Balanced and well-crafted, it’s a wonderful newspaper.”
Design Director Katinka Bukh adds her perspective: “The look of the paper is stringent, classic – almost eccentric with its new high-quality photos and illustrations. And we have updated the typography for a more legible and modern body text.”
All in all the jury concludes that especially the paper’s visual specialists and their continuous interpretation of the design in interaction with the weekly texts animate the newspaper.
The jury praises De Volkskrant’s compact pages, filled with highly creative illustrations, photographs and graphic details. The bold front pages and section covers caught their eye too. “The balance between space, typography, image and data create highly dynamic lay-outs. Graphic elements and colour are used sparingly but purposely”, says the jury. “The skillfully edited series of photos add honesty and intimacy to the stories.”
“Luckily our editors-in-chief attach great importance to design”
Above all, the collaboration between the different teams is lauded. It shows what newspapers can achieve when their editorial and creative directions join forces. “It’s an exciting experience to dive into a publication that manages to provide such balanced cohesion combined with continuous surprise - all while looking so effortless.”
“Luckily our editors-in-chief attach great importance to design”, Koos Jeremiasse says. Together with Jaap Biemans and Lucas Van Esch, he is responsible for De Volkskrant’s design. “Photography, infographics and illustrations are important pillars for our newspaper, and therefore also for this success."