Graphic designers beware! Nutella used a bot to design its packaging

For their latest campaign in Italy, Nutella has ditched human graphic designers and has opted instead to use an algorithm created by Hewlett Packard.

The code used a pre-existing database of patterns and colours to create SEVEN MILLION DIFFERENT versions of the Nutella graphic identity.

The designs have been scattered among all the jars available in Italy at supermarkets and other retail stores. The project, called Nutella Unica is a partnership between manufacturer Ferrero and advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather Italia. Each “Nutella Unica” jar will be stamped with its unique code so collectors can authenticate it.

The campaign is backed up with print ads and a special TV spot made just for the occasion.

Ogilvy & Mather Italia said to the press, “We think Nutella can be as special and expressive as every single one of its customers.

“With this objective, Nutella Unica was born – the first limited-edition made by seven million different jars. Dozens of patterns, thousands of colour combinations, one special algorithm.”

Hewlett Packard provided the printing and software technology for the project, Andrea Guzzetti was the art director responsible for the campaign and Serena Lombardo served as project leader.

This is not the first time artificial intelligence has taken over graphic design duties. This past February, the Vitra Design Museum in Germany held Hello, Robot, an exhibition dedicated to robotics and the relationship between humans and artificial intelligence. In the same vein as Nutella’s initiative, the German design museum “hired” an algorithm to design the layout for the booklet that accompanied the exhibit.

Bots are increasingly taking over creative activities we previously considered exclusive to humans. Now days AI can write poetry, film scripts and Google is even attempting to create artificial intelligence capable of composing music autonomously.

It seems that we’re getting closer and closer to a scenario where robots can think, create and express themselves just as humans or even better. And when that time comes, what’s next for us?