The Type Directors Club, the world’s leading typography organization, today announced the 35 talented winners from 14 countries in the Ascenders 2023 competition, celebrating typographers, lettering artists, and type designers age 35 and under.

Ascenders is the world’s premier portfolio-based competition dedicated to type in all its versatile forms, and the inspiring designers — individuals or duos — who are elevating the medium. 

Ascenders 2023 winners are:

  • Maram Al Refaei, Archief, Cairo
  • Ximena Amaya, Los Angeles
  • Xing Chen and Li Xiang, United Design Lab, Beijing 
  • Carlos Oliveras Colom, DonCarrrlos, Fort Worth
  • Carlos Mignot Cordeiro, Plau, Niteroi (Brazil)
  • Cecilia del Castillo Daza, Barcelona
  • Julia Martinez Diana, Antipixel Type Studio, Buenos Aires
  • Fernanda Didini, The New York Times, New York
  • Elias Hanzer, Berlin
  • Jun Ki Hong, Base Design, New York
  • Hanna Karraby, Philadelphia
  • Heejae Kim, New York
  • Min Kim, US
  • Irina Koryagina, New York
  • Jérémy Landes, Studio Triple, Berlin
  • Beatriz Lozano, Brooklyn
  • Ruggero Magrì, Catania (Italy)
  • Fernando Marar, Nubank, São Paulo
  • MARTE (Martina Galarza), Brooklyn
  • Sabrina Nacmias and Maxime Gau, Faire Type, Brooklyn
  • Zin Nagao, Fukuoka (Japan)
  • Alex Nassour, Wieden+Kennedy, New York
  • Nubia Navarro, Nubikini Studio, Bogotá
  • Sean O’Connor, Mucca Design, Brooklyn
  • Seryozha Rasskazov, Typetention!, Lausanne (Switzerland) 
  • Daan Rietbergen, Utrecht
  • Vojtěch Říha, Superior Type, Prague
  • Sanchit Sawaria, Brooklyn
  • Julie Soudanne, Jli Type Design, Paris
  • Yuan Wang, Auf Dich, Shanghai
  • Lin Xi, Linxi Design, Shenzhen
  • Simin Xu, Ningbo (China)
  • He Yuxuan, whynotdesign, Shenzhen 
  • Rozi Zhu, New York
  • Zipeng Zhu, Dazzle Studio, Brooklyn

Entrants submitted curated portfolios of their top six projects alongside a short introduction to their practice, and were judged by an international jury of global leaders in the field, including a number of past Ascenders winners.

This group of 35 joins prominent past Ascenders winners include Au Chon Hin (Macao, 2022), Andrej & Andrej (Bratislava, 2022) Kevin Cantrell (Mantua, US, 2018), Fernanda Cozzi (Buenos Aires, 2019), Roxane Gataud (Brussels, 2022), Wael Morcos (New York, 2018), Gemma O’Brien (Sydney, 2022), Tré Seals (Washington, DC, 2018), and others. 

First launched in 2018, the Ascenders competition was the idea of former TDC Advisory Board member Paul Carlos, principal at Pure+Applied, adjunct faculty, Parsons School of Design, The New School, New York, who remains active in the organization.

“While Ascenders was originally envisioned to celebrate those breaking into the field, it has very quickly become about recognizing those already leading, carrying our industry to new heights and aspirations,” said Ksenya Samarskaya, TDC managing director.  “If you want to know what’s at the bleeding edge today, and what tomorrow is bound to look like, memorize these names.” 

TDC, part of The One Club for Creativity, will host a public reception for the Ascenders 2023 winners in the fall.

This year’s Ascenders branding is designed by Anıl Aykan at Barnbrook Design in London, a recent member of the TDC Advisory Board.  The design depicts the “ascending” creatives by embracing the idea of growth and invasion, with the journey demonstrated by visual metaphors of steps toward further growth and expansion, and included accompanying audio from Fragile Self. 

The One Club for Creativity, producer of The One Show, ADC Annual Awards, ONE Asia Creative Awards, Type Directors Club competition, TDC Ascenders, Young Guns, and more, is the world’s foremost non-profit organization whose mission is to support and celebrate the global creative community.  Revenue generated from entries to its global awards shows goes back into the industry to fund programming under the organization’s four pillars: Education, Inclusion & Diversity, Gender Equality, and Creative Development.