Semiofest 2013 – Thank you!!

We wanted to write this last post before the end of 2013. Organizing Semiofest has been a brilliant experience, and we really hope to see you in Shanghai in 2014! Here you have an article about the event by Chris Arning,  some reasons for hosting Semiofest in the coming years and the comments from many of the participants.

And last but not least, here you have some inspiring videos for joining us in Shanghai next year.  See you!!

Semiofest 2013 talks – A visual summary

Why Semiofest?

Semiofest 2013 mood

Design and Semiotics workshops: May 30th

Lucia Neva
Malex Salamanques


One of the main concerns of Semiofest is spreading the word about what we do with semiotics. So this year we are going to offer two workshops for people interested in Semiotics (students, teachers, professionals of different areas), focusing on Design and Semiotics. We are delighted to have Malex Salamanques (Space Doctors, UK) and Lucía Neva (Visual Signo, UK) coordinating them!

Here you have the proposal:

Design and semiotics: looking both ways

While some semioticians within commercial contexts certainly make claims to the adoption of design analysis, these are far removed from systematic methods to analyse visual grammars in combination with semiotic theories and analytical techniques related to the application of theory and knowledge intrinsic to graphic design. The main objective of this workshop is to demonstrate the value of an approach to understand products and communications that combines both semiotics and graphic design as a powerful method to minimise visual dilemmas in the commercial context. The workshop will incorporate a brief introduction to semiotics, examples and practical exercises of formal analysis that derive from traditions within graphic design itself in combination with semiotics approaches.
The grounds for this workshop is the experience that both authors have as graphic designers working in commercial semiotics in the UK, providing design and cultural analysis using this powerful approach to generate insight and translate it- sometimes almost simultaneously – in cues for production (creative execution) for local and global brands, in a wide range of categories.

Requirements: Digital camera or phone with a digital camera
In alphabetical order:
Lucia Neva. Visual Signo – London, UK
Malex Salamanques. Space Doctors – Brighton, UK


Practical information:


Date: Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Time: 10 to 13

Cost: 25 euros (oncce you fill in the registration form, we’ll send you the details for payment)

Venue: Anaglifos Art Factory, c/Monec, 17, 08003, Barcelona





En Semiofest, uno de nuestros principales intereses es explicar y difundir qué hacemos con la semiótica. Para ello, este año vamos a ofrecer dos talleres para personas interesadas en el tema (estudiantes, docentes, profesionales de distintas áreas), sobre Diseño y Semiótica. Estamos encantados de anunciar que tendremos a Malex Salamanques (Space Doctors, Reino Unido) y Lucía Neva (Visual Signo, Reino Unido) como coordinadoras.

Aquí tienen la propuesta:

Diseño y semiótica: Mirando los dos lados
En el contexto de la Semiotica comercial, algunos profesionales profesan la inclusión de análisis diseño en sus investigaciones. Sin embargo, es común encontrar que muchos desconocen metodologías sistemáticas propias del diseño gráfico para analizar gramáticas visuales y muchas veces se analiza el diseño de manera superficial y/o de manera independiente del análisis semiótico.

El objetivo principal de este taller es demostrar el valor de un enfoque que combina metodologías provenientes de la semiótica y el diseño gráfico para analizar diferentes tipos comunicaciones y productos, ayudando a reducir al mínimo los dilemas visuales que se pueden producir en un contexto comercial. El taller incorporará una breve introducción a la semiótica, ejemplos y ejercicios prácticos de análisis formal que se derivan de tradiciones propias del diseño gráfico, en combinación con enfoques semióticos y antropológicos.

Lucia y Malex son diseñadoras gráficas quienes trabajan en el contexto de semiótica comercial en el Reino Unido, ayudando a marcas locales y globales en distintas categorías a visualizar y traducir signos relevantes para la producción (ejecución creativa) e implementación de mensajes. Las dos son pioneras en la implementación de metodologías de diseño en el análisis semiótico.

Requisitos: Cámara digital o móvil con cámara digital.

En orden alfabético:
Lucia Neva. Visual Signo – Londres, Reino Unido.
Malex Salamanques. Space Doctors – Brighton, Reino Unido.


Fecha: Jueves 30 de mayo de 2013

Horario: 14 a 17 horas

Coste: 25 euros (una vez que recibamos tus datos a través del formulario, te enviaremos los datos de pago).

Lugar: Anaglifos Art Factory, c/Monec, 17, 08003, Barcelona



Friday lunch: a Catalan touch

Hi all,

Just a few lines to let you know that we are going to have lunch at La Dolça Herminia on Friday, May 31st. It’s a nice restaurant, with modern Catalan food, and close to the venue. We will enjoy two courses and a dessert, so we hope we won´t be too sleepy to go on in the afternoon! We will have three options for each course, including a vegetarian choice.

Here you have some images:

Most of the photos are from La Dolça Herminia Website.


As we all know, planning a journey requires time, energy and a lot of patience. This is especially true when looking for accommodation.  We are also aware of the difficulty in finding affordable accommodation when booking last minute.
Here at Semiofest, we want you to feel as comfortable as possible, so we have that part covered. Let’s just say we decided to simplify this tedious process as much as possible, by offering you a range of websites that can help you to find the location that best suits your needs.

Keep in mind that Barcelona is a small city, so any accommodation close to the city centre (Plaça Catalunya / Plaza Cataluña / Catalonia square) will do.


As mentioned before, we have a special agreement with Cocoon Barcelona for those who would like to rent an apartment. They offer a 10% discount for Semiofest attendees. To book an apartment, you have to:; on the search box on your upper left, type “Palau Musica”; you will see many options in the area. Choose the one you are interested in, and when making the reservation, type “Semiofest” in the “I have a discount code” box.

If you have any queries, you can contact them at

Hostels, bed and breakfasts and hotels

Budget hotels, bed&breakfasts and hostels near the venue (5-20 minutes walk)

Hostal Layetana
Hostel Barcelona
Fabrizzio Petit Palace
Equity Point Centric
Sant Jordi Alberg
Casa Gracia Barcelona Hostel
Casa Maca

Some of the hotels near the area are:
Budget&design hotels

Chic and basic
Praktik Hotels

** Hotels

*** Hotels
Banys Orientals
Hotel Ciutat de BCN

**** Hotels

***** Hotels


These websites can offer you discounts at incredible rates, so that you can sit back, relax and feel confident that you are almost halfway along in your journey to Barcelona!! – This site is wonderful for finding discounts all around Barcelona. Just type in the destination at the top of the page, add in the dates you require and wha-lá you have a great list. Here is the direct link to Barcelona. is a fantastic site – you might be lucky and find some hotels up to 10-20% off hotels, you can sometimes find hotels at 70%! It´s extremely economical and won´t leave you feeing disappointed. Definitely a page to be looked at! The direct link to Barcelona is:

If trivago and restago don´t do it for you, then here is another possibility: –  After choosing your location and your dates, you can put in further specifications in the column at the left-hand side of the page. The City Centre and Gotic/Born areas are the options you should be looking for. Other specifications in the list can assist you in finding those needs that are best suited to you.

Other sites that will help you in your search are:

We really hope that you find the perfect room for your stay with us here in Barcelona! Remember to search close to the City Centre so that your journey is a smooth and easy ride.

We wish you the best of luck to you from the team at Semiofest Barcelona!

Key Speakers: Malcolm Evans and Gemma Jones, “Making semiotics useful”


Malcolm Gemma01Gemma Jones & Malcolm Evans, Space Doctors, Semiofest Keynote Presentation

“Making Semiotics Useful”.

How to spread helpful semiotic and cultural insight. Best practice sharing and interaction with the world’s most effective client-focused marketing semiotics consultancy.

Transparent process, clarity, teamwork, effective engagement with client agendas and discourses. How to craft a commercial semiotics offer as part of the wider business world of consumer insight.

Key speaker: Carlos Scolari (Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain)


We are delighted to confirm that one of our key speakers will be Carlos Scolari, writer, researcher and lecturer at Pompeu Fabra University, in Barcelona.

He is going to talk about transmedia storytelling, a subject he has been researching and working with for many years. You can check his recently launched book about it here.

Here you have his proposal for Semiofest 2013:

Transmedia storytelling

By Carlos A. Scolari

Transmedia storytelling is one of the most interesting narrative experiences emerging from contemporary media ecology. Nowadays narratives are liquid: they flow from one media to another incorporating new characters and situations. In transmedia storytelling narratives, programs expand along the semiosphere.

But transmedia storytelling cannot be reduced to the official narrative world (that is, the canon): the users also participate in this expansion! The kingdom of the fandom is a borderless territory where everything is possible. My presentation will reflect on transmedia storytelling from a semiotic perspective and, at the same time, it will describe some of the challenges that these new liquid narratives present to the discipline.


Twitter: @cscolari

Researcher, professor and many other things around digital communication, semiotics and media ecology (Barcelona, Spain) –

The venue: Anaglifos Art factory

We are going to celebrate Semiofest 2013 at Anaglifos, art factory (Monec street no.17, Barcelona).

The venue is close to Palau de la Música, a wonderful Opera house in an Art Noveau building, which you can visit during your days here!

Below, you can see some images and the map of the area. We’ll suggest some hotels and short rental apartments soon, with special prices for Semiofest participants.

And you can read some details about airports and trains in Barcelona/Catalonia here.

Interested? Book your seat here.

All photos are from Anaglifos website.

CM-Capture-1 anaglifos_2anaglifos_3anaglifos_4


Larger map

Arriving in Barcelona

Photo by Michale & Christa Richert. 1189176_95261207-1024x768

We would like to give some advice in order to book your flight.

There are three airports in Catalonia (the autonomous region Barcelona is in), that are frequently referred as “Barcelona airports” by some airlines. The truth is, there is only one airport in Barcelona, called El Prat. The other two are in Girona and Reus (Tarragona). You have to keep in mind the extra time and money arriving at these two last airports will imply.

Barcelona Airport
There are many means of public transport from this airport: the regular bus (although we don’t advice you to take it, it takes long time and you could get lost); the train (cheap and safe, it takes you to Passeig de Gracia station, quite near the area of Semiofest venue) or the Aerobus (a bus that goes directly to Plaça de Catalunya, right in the center of the city). It charges 5,75 euros per single ticket and 9,95 per return ticket (valid RETURN up to 9 days after purchasing).

If you choose to take the train, the T-10 (10 integrated non-personal trips) card is valid, and if you’re planning to take some public transport, it´s better to buy this (9,80 euros) than a single ticket (2 euros).

And of course, there are taxis: a trip to the city centre will be around 30/35 euros.

Girona Airport
It’s the second best option. There is a bus that will take you to Estació del Nord (a bus station in Barcelona city) in around one hour.

The fares for this bus are 16 euros (single ticket) and 25 euros (return ticket).

Reus Airport
There is a bus company that offers direct transport from the airport to Barcelona city. The prices are similar to the ones from Girona Airport. Here you have the link.

If you are coming by train, the international station in Barcelona is called Sants. Here you have the information of the Spanish national train company, RENFE (although we strongly recommend to check your local websites, as this one is really messy to book international tickets). This web (that has international versions linked to it) is better:

And if you have any doubts or queries, please do write to us (

Regarding visas, please check the official information here.