The Pantone Colour of the Year 2020 makes a statement about peace and communication

Pantone 19-4502 Classic Blue has been named the colour company's annual landmark tone, based on trend forecasting and analysis of current culture, and for the first time has been interpreted into a sound, feel, taste and scent.

5 December 2019

Pantone has announced its Colour of the Year: 19-4502 Classic Blue. The colour company makes the announcement annually as the result of extensive research, analysis of current culture and trend-forecasting, and intends to represent the state of the world and societal needs in colour form. This year, Pantone is making a political statement, in its own way. It explains how Classic Blue symbolises “protection, stability, peace, and confidence, as well as encouraging deep thinking, open mindfulness, and communication”.

A statement from Pantone continues: “Imprinted in our psyches as a restful colour, Classic Blue brings a sense of peace and tranquillity to the human spirit, offering refuge. A reflective blue tone, Classic Blue fosters resilience.”

For the first time, the company has this year commissioned a collection of creative studios to make the colour “multi-sensory,” giving Classic Blue a sound, texture, taste and scent.

Classic Blue’s sound created by Audio UX is nostalgic, Pantone says, and “takes us to a place that is comforting and familiar”. Its texture, by studio The Inside, is soft and velvety, of course, but apparently also elicits “feelings of empowerment to expand the mind and build foundations for the future”.

Firmenich, the world’s largest privately-owned fragrance and flavour company, has made a taste and scent for Classic Blue; the taste is described as “gentle and elegant” while the scent evokes contemplation and “a feeling of optimism” with notes of blue water and sea salt lifted by airy sky.

“We are living in a time that requires trust and faith,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by Pantone 19-4052 Classic Blue, a solid and dependable blue hue we can always rely on. Imbued with a deep resonance, Classic Blue provides an anchoring foundation. A boundless blue evocative of the vast and infinite evening sky, [it] encourages us to look beyond the obvious to expand our thinking; challenging us to think more deeply, increase our perspective and open the flow of communication.”

Last year’s Colour of the Year was Living Coral said to convey “the desired, familiar, and energising aspects of colour found in nature,” while 2018’s Ultra Violet channelled Prince and “originality, ingenuity and visionary thinking”.

GalleryPantone Colour of the Year 2020: Classic Blue 19-4502

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Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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