Paint brand Dulux has unveiled a "reassuring" earthy beige hue called Brave Ground as its colour of the year for 2021.
Brave Ground was selected as an "elemental" hue that reflects "the strength we can draw from nature, our growing desire to align more with the planet and looking towards the future" – particularly in a world still dealing with the challenges of the coronavirus crisis.
"As a result of the global pandemic many people's priorities are shifting significantly, to focus much more on their well-being," explained creative director of Dulux UK Marianne Shillingford.
"Colour can play a significant role in this – and with the calming, restorative and natural tones of our ColourFutures 2021 palettes we hope to empower professionals to create spaces where occupants can reflect, recharge and recalibrate."
"The past year has seen how we live and work utterly transformed," added Heleen van Gen, head of AkzoNobel's Global Aesthetic Centre in the Netherlands.
"We have gone through the most uncertain of times, so it's understandable that we see reassuring, natural tones returning, which can be used to create the calm and sanctuary people require."
As well as offering a sense of tranquillity, Brave Ground is also intended to be a versatile colour that can be applied to a variety of different settings. Shifting in tone throughout the day, the colour creates what Dulux and AkzoNobel describe as "subtly responsive environments".
The two companies have additionally developed a handful of complementary colour palettes that can "sit comfortably" alongside Brave Ground – among them is Expressive, a collection of striking reds and pinks, and Timeless, a warm group of yellows and ochres.
Brave Ground is slightly more muted in appearance than Tranquil Dawn, a cool-green shade that Dulux selected as its colour of the year for 2020.
At the time of its unveiling, interiors writer and former ELLE Decor editor-in-chief Michelle Ogundehin said in an opinion piece for Dezeen that the paint brand "could have been bolder" and opted for a stronger hue that more acutely reflected mounting global unrest.
American company Pantone is yet to announce its 2021 colour of the year – last year it chose Classic Blue, a "universal favourite" hue that is meant to "brings a sense of peace and tranquillity to the human spirit".