New Jersey-based Pantone, known for its standardized color reproduction system, has announced its annual color of the year in 2021. In a switch from prior years, the company has chosen to select two colors: Ultimate Grey and Illuminating, a bright yellow. Color of the Year Ultimate Grey and a cheery shade of yellow dubbed Illuminating.
Commenting on the dual choice, Pantone executive Leatrice Eiseman explained, “The selection of two independent colors highlight how different elements come together to express a message of strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting, conveying the idea that it’s not about one color or one person, it’s about more than one.
“The union of an enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant yellow Illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude. Practical and rock solid but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope. We need to feel encouraged and uplifted, this is essential to the human spirit.”
While the colors have been referred to as hues favored by gentrifiers, in reality they’re a good choice for the bumpy road ahead. Ultimate Grey not only speaks to the heavy mood of a world still mired in a pandemic but also the classic cotton sweatsuit that’s taken over everyone’s wardrobe. Conversely, yellow speaks to happier days ahead as we begin to put COVID-19 behind us.
Looking back on Pantone’s 2020 selection, Classic Blue, somehow it was apt, too, even though it was selected before the virus went worldwide. Blue for the skies we spent gazing upon and also blue for the all the very many sad losses.