Design Awards

A summary of some of the more prestigious design awards across Canada.

Graphex Awards

Graphex is Canada’s biennial National design awards program.

An Icograda-endorsed program, Graphex has been celebrating the best of visual communications in British Columbia since 1977 and across Canada since 2000, the winning entries reflect the best work from Canada’s graphic and communication design professionals over the past two years.

Presented by the GDC and founded by the BC Chapter, the primary goal of Graphex is to promote the value of design to the Canadian public and business community at large, to celebrate the best in the industry and to create an archive of Canadian design for future generations. Good Design is Good Business.

Applied Arts Awards

Canada’s most popular award programs for the visual communications sector.

For over 20 years, Applied Arts Awards have showcased the best work produced in design, advertising, interactive, photography, illustration, printing, and from art students across North America. Judged by panels of highly regarded industry professionals and experts, in a rigorous process developed over our two decades of awards experience, every entry is scored independently by each judge, based on creative merit, technical excellence and suitability for end use. Discussion is not permitted and judges must abstain from voting for their own work.

Unlike other Canadian awards in this sector, Applied Arts Awards do not assign first, second or third place, but rather, treat all winners equally. Applied Arts Awards provide the greatest exposure of any awards program offered in Canada. All winning work is:

  • Showcased in highly anticipated and well read issues, complete with full credits. Total readership 46,000+
  • Featured for a full year on the very popular Awards Winners Gallery on (annual traffic of 300,000 visitors)
  • Displayed at the well-attended annual Applied Arts Winners’ Exhibit in all its glory. 1000+ attendees
  • Winners also receive a personalized certificate to show off!

For more information please click here.

Design Edge Canada Regional Awards

Design Edge Canada proudly presents its 4th annual Regional Design Awards.

After a one year absence, the Canadian Regional Design Awards [The Redgees] are back and better than ever and are now accepting submissions at

The only awards program of its kind in Canada, the Redgee Awards sees designers and design studios from the same creative communities across the country compete in 14 categories—including a student category—with a chance to be named Best in Region. Qualifying work must have been produced between Sept. 1, 2012 and Dec. 16, 2013.

The entry deadline is Dec. 16, 2013.

Leading designers from regions across the country will judge the work. Stay tuned for the announcements revealing the Judges for the 2014 Awards programme. Best of Region winners will be profiled on the Redgee Honour Roll featured online at and the Designedge Canada Facebook page, while submissions from winners and finalists will also be featured in a special awards issue of Designedge Canada.

The Redgee Award Winners will be announced at a special Redgees party in Toronto in April 2014.

For more information contact Canadian Design Awards Co-ordinator
Nancy Kay Clark at

Design Exchange Awards

The DXAs judge design by results, balancing function, aesthetics, and economic success.

The Design Exchange Awards promote Canadian design excellence and recognizes the critical role of design in all types of organizations including commercial entities (large and small businesses), not-for-profit organizations, and the public sector. The Awards celebrate the success stories achieved through close partnerships between clients and designers. The DXAs are Canada’s only award program to judge design by results, balancing function, aesthetics, and economic success.

These awards are designed to:

  • Expand national understanding of design as an essential resource
  • Demonstrate that investment in design impacts overall business success
  • Celebrate effectiveness in all design disciplines
  • Highlight the critical role of design in enhancing quality of life
  • Reinforce the value of strong client/designer partnerships
  • Promote the critical role of design in sustainability

A jury of leading business executives, designers and community leaders will select a Gold, Silver, Bronze and two Honourable Mentions in each of the twelve categories.

For more information, visit the DX website or contact Noa Bronstein, Professional Development Coordinator at 416-216-2120 or email

ADCC Directions

Canada's longest running annual design and advertising awards.

In 1949 the ADCC put on the first advertising and design awards show in Canada. Ever since, it’s been going strong. Each year they invite a selection of international judges to join them and select the most brilliant creative work in the industry.
The awards show, known as Directions, is acknowledged as one of the premiere creative awards show in Canada. The accompanying printed annual, stands as the document of record of the best work each year. Be sure to join the entrants from across Canada in Advertising Broadcast & Print, Graphic Design, Editorial Design and Interactive Media who will compete in next year’s show!

Click here to visit their website and find about the most recent deadlines as well as view their past winners archive.

The Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada

Dedicated specifically to the design and printing of Canadian books, the finalists in these awards are sent to the Leipzig Competition in Frankfurt, Germany each year.

Since 1981 the Alcuin Society has sponsored the only national competition for book design in Canada. Each year, a call for entries is sent out. Books published in Canada during the calendar year of competition are eligible for submission. Each title must represent the exclusive work of a Canadian book designer.

The judging of the entries takes place the following year in the spring, and the award winning books are posted to their website, showcased in an awards catalogue produced by the Alcuin Society, and exhibited nationally and internationally. After the exhibitions, books have been contributed to various prestigious permanent collections in Canada, Germany, and Japan.

For more information please click here.

Design at Work

Design at Work is an annual juried competition recognizing the work of professional members of RGD Ontario and to showcase the value graphic design can bring to business communications.

The projects are selected for meeting the clients' goals through the development of advanced design concepts and implementation of sophisticated communications vehicles.

Each project is a miniature case study of how design can impact a client's ability to communicate messages to key stakeholders and convey an organization’s unique qualities with clarity, consistency, differentiation and energy.

For information on the 2002–2010 winners please click here. For more recent winners please click here.