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Co-Sponsored by the Chicago Architectural Club, with the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and AIA Chicago

Competitions serve an important purpose in the design community- they give designers a framework for exploring their own ideas and a way to refine their skills.  But, most competitions are wasteful.  Rarely does anything useful or truly meaningful come out of them.  There is generally a good reason for this- it takes a lot of hard, gutsy work to bring something to reality.

That’s where we come in.  We want to inspire you to bring your ideas to reality.

You need a framework to explore your own ideas.  You need to get something built.  Your community needs the design ideas you have spent so much time and money developing, and you want to make a name for yourself.

So Black Spectacles has created The Un-Competition Project.  Invent a project, design it, and post your design on our Facebook page, with a 2 minute documentary video.We want to hear how you came up with your project, what your design is, and how you are going to get it built.  So, no, there is no competition brief, and no, we’re not going to get your project built.  You make the project up yourself, big or small- you sell it, and you figure out how to get it built. Then document it in a video, and we’ll show it to the world.

Then, after all of the results are in, Black Spectacles has teamed up with the Chicago Architectural Club who will host an event that expands the dialogue about design entrepreneurship that the Un-Competition Project initiates.  Hosted by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the winners will be presented, and the event will explore alternate methods of getting work, getting it built, and establishing yourself in the profession.  If you don’t happen to be in Chicago at the time of the event, you can watch live as we stream the event on our website.

Submission Details

Your 2 minute video should include the following:

1. How you came up with your project, and why you think it needs to be realized.
2. Explanation of your design idea, (include 3D and orthographic drawings/models).
3. Explanation of how you intend to get (or already have gotten) the project realized.

Registration & Submission

The registration fee is $50.  Early registration is $35 and closes on October 3.  There are two steps to enter:

  1. Submit your registration fee here
  2. Submit your 2 minute video via our Facebook page


  • September 6 – Un-Competition Opens
  • October 3- Early Registration Closes (midnight CST)
  • January  9- Registration/Submissions due (midnight CST)
  • January  11- Public Voting Closes (midnight CST)
  • January  13- Winners Announced
  • January  19- Chicago Architectural Club Event


The UN Competition Project

inscription dates
until 09/01/2012

Chicago USA


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