IBM Herman-Miller Vitra Penfolds

IBM, HermanMiller, Vitra

Dear Friend of the Eames Office,

I just want to call your attention to a pretty great opportunity that we announced a little while ago. You might even call it the icing on the cake of our 10/10/10 celebrations.

It's the Powers of Ten Video Response Design Competition we are organizing with Core77. It is one more facet of our Powers of Ten Day 2010—which has major sponsorship from IBM, and additional support from Herman Miller, Vitra, and Penfolds.

So, here's the concept: Charles Eames once said of the Eames Films that they were not really films at all, they were simply tools—a way to get across an idea. In that spirit, the Eames Office has worked with Core77 (if you don't know the site—PLEASE check out no matter what!) to create a design competition. And this time, the design object is a kind of film—specifically a 2 minute MAX (not IMAX) video response to the classic Eames film Powers of Ten.

Just make a video (and encourage your friends to) no more than 2 minutes long honoring, celebrating, extending, exploring, mashing up—you name it—the classic Eames film Powers of Ten. There are thousands of dollars worth of prizes (including some cold cash), all generously provided by Herman Miller to make it worth your while to blow people's minds. The jury (there is an audience prize too) convenes in January, so pay attention to the rules at the end of this email to be sure you don't miss any important nuances.

One more cool thing? A donation is made in the winner's name to the Eames Foundation, so if you make it to LA (under your own steam, natch, to be clear), you'll get an inside tour.

Lastly: the Core77 Competition platform allows you to post works-in-progress (storyboards, scripts whatever) to get feedback, share ideas, intimidate the competition, whatever you like.

Here are the particulars in all their glory.

Good luck and we look forward to seeing what you do.

Eames Demetrios

Director, Eames Office

Official Announcement from Core77:

On the occasion of Powers of Ten Day (10/10/10), Core77 and the Eames Office are proud to launch the Powers of Ten Video Response Design Competition--a new design competition inviting designers to submit 2-minute "response videos" to the Eames's seminal film Powers of Ten. The videos can respond to the film in any form--from reinterpretations and mashups to tributes and reflections--with the entry period running through January 9th, 2011.


The jury includes Eames Demetrios from the Eames Office, filmaker Gary Hustwit, MoMA's Paola Antonelli, Adam Bly from Seed Media Group, Ayse Birsel of Birsel+Seck, and Allan Chochinov from Core77. The prizes are full-featured (see below) and we are looking forward to seeing some extraordinarily creative work!

The competition will be hosted on Core77's new "Design Arena" Community Challenge platform, powered by Jovoto--an open innovation platform built for community collaboration and exchange. Since the platform allows designers to update their entries up until the competition deadline, designers can upload storyboards, inspirations, and sketches, getting feedback and iterating their way to their final video. Designers can submit as many entries as they'd like.

At Core77, we're very excited about celebrating Powers of Ten, and we'd love it if you would consider sharing this competition with anyone you think might craft an entry.


Create a 2-minute video response to the Eames Office's seminal film, Powers of Ten.


In 1977, Charles and Ray Eames unleashed into the world a short film entitled Powers of Ten, one of the most influential and beloved design movies ever made. Distributed by IBM and with a running time of only 9 minutes, the film (based on the 1957 book Cosmic View by Kees Boeke and Charles’ Cranbrook dialogues with Eliel Saarinen) gives a visceral sense of exponential growth by depicting the scale of the Universe through factors of 10, zooming out from a scene of a couple on a picnic blanket, to the (then) observable universe, and back down to the protons and neutrons of a carbon atom in the picnicker's hand. The film is archived by both the National Film Registry and the Library of Congress and has inspired countless designers, scientists, thinkers and doers for over 40 years.

The journey has always been ongoing: Charles and Ray made two previous versions (in 1963 and the admired Rough Sketch in 1968). In recent years, the Eames Office has made Powers of Ten Thinking a centerpiece of its education—centered around the notion that "Scale is the New Geography."

Task Definition

In this iterative, exploratory spirit and on the occasion of Powers of Ten Month, Core77 and the Eames Office are proud to invite you to create a "response video" to Powers of Ten, limited to 2 minutes, celebrating this seminal work in any way your creativity leads—a reinterpretation, a mashup, a tribute, a reflection, a love letter.

Note: The competition platform invites iteration–you have the ability to update your entry at any time up until the competition deadline—so posting storyboards, inspirations, and other materials early is encouraged. This will invite people to comment on your work, offer inspiration, and help build a collaborative community. Post, share, refine, engage!

Judging Criteria

Originality, point of view, quality, engagement


Jury Prize Winner:

$2,000 cash

Eames Molded Plywood Lounge Chair (Value $1,250)

$2,000 donation to the Eames Foundation in the name of the winner (includes a tour of the Eames House; travel not included)

In addition, to watch and read from their Eames chair, the Grand Prize winner will also receive:

A boxed set of volumes 1 through 6 of the Eames Films; Including of course Powers of Ten, among over 40 films

A vintage copy of the Eames Office book 'Images of Early America’'

A copy of 'The recent 100 Quotes by Charles Eames'

An Eames Primer by Eames Demetrios

Popular Vote Winner:

$1,000 in cash

Eames Molded Plywood Lounge Chair (Value $1250)


We are grateful to Herman Miller for helping to make this competition possible.

Mandatory Requirements

Videos must be 2 minutes or less in length, and must not exceed 50MB in size. (Videos longer will be disqualified.) Do not use copyrighted imagery that you do not have the rights to. If you use images or footage from the POWERS OF TEN including, for the purposes of illustration but not limitation, video, film, book or any other representation of the Charles and Ray Eames Film Powers of Ten (collectively "POT") in your submission to this contest, you agree to the additional terms hereof. Eames Office, LLC ("Eames") is the owner of all right, title and interest in and to POT, including all copyrights. Eames hereby grants you a limited license to use POT solely for purposes of creating a two-minute video (the "Video") for submission to this contest. You agree not to otherwise present, submit, publish, or otherwise use the Video without the written consent of Eames.


Announcement and registration: October 10, 2010

Competition platform open for entries: October 18, 2010

Competition Closed: January 9th, 2011

Voting Closed: January 16th, 2011

Winners Announced: January 25th, 2011

This initiative is a Proud Participant in 10/10/10 – Powers of Ten Day 2010, organized by Eames Office & generously sponsored by IBM, with additional support from Herman Miller, Vitra & Penfolds. Find out how to participate each year at