Hat-trick puts Horniman in new bracket
South London's intriguingly eclectic Horniman Museum and Gardens has a new mark and identity system, based on the bracket symbol, courtesy of Hat-trick
The Horniman was originally founded in 1901 by Frederick Horniman, Victorian tea trader and voracious collector. The museum, somewhat randomly, brings together musical instruments, anthropology and natural history. Previously it made use of an all uppercase mark by Carter Wong
However, it has just completed a £2.3m redevelopment of its gardens, which opened this week. "The brief we were given was to create a new brand that reflects the new unified offer of the renowned museum collections and the beautiful gardens," explains Hat-trick design's Jim Sutherland.
The new mark brings the gardens and museum together, while referencing the eclectic nature of the latter: "The idea of a 'collection of collections' was our starting point for the identity," Sutherland says. "We took the idea of a bracket device and reflected it to create the distinctive H mark. This gives a very flexible device to present the variety of the collections and the many different facets of the organisation. It can be used both with imagery and editorially."
Glass doors at the Museum using the H device
The bracket was drawn from scratch "as we couldn't find a suitable shape that reflected to form the H," Sutherland says. "It was then redrawn by Charles Stewart, an amazing lettering artist we use a lot. It is a combination of a square and curly bracket." The Museum and Gardens text is set in Benton Sans which is also used for signage.
The bracket device is also carried through into signage (above) and literature
While repeat patterns (mixed with other bracket types) are used as a decorative or illustrative device
Bags and wrapping paper (above) are currently in production as is a set of bookends (prototype shown below) for sale in the Museum shop
All in all, this feels like a really elegant, appropriate and well-executed scheme. The bracket device provides endless opportunities for both communications and the all-important merchandise while neatly referencing the unique offer of the Horniman.
Creative directors: Gareth Howat, Jim Sutherland
Designers: Gareth Howat, Alex Jurva, Jim Sutherland
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Loved the Horniman when I was younger. Rediscovered it of late when I moved close to it. Love this, think it works perfectly. Especially love the family tours brochure.
Utterly gorgeous. Stripped back and perfect. And damn, that's some fine wrapping paper.
Brilliant as usual! I love everything about this except for the family tours brochure which seems to gratuitously explicate the process (all those sketches, the days spent searching for the right curly braces) but not share the creative leap of the final identity.
Hehe - "horny-man museum"
Very nice visual style / corporate identity for the museum, I love the application - packing paper, bag ...
Sorry to be contrary, but I just think this is dull.
There is nothing inherently witty,clever or relevant about an H/bracket, the graphic treatment really doesn't do anything to reflect the diversity of the collection. It's such a quirky, weird collection but I don't get any sense of that from the identity.
I know it's tantamount to sacrilege to criticise a studio liike Hat-trick on here but it's just 'nice', a bit bland, which the Horniman museum is anything but.
A bracket does not an identity system make. The fish made of brackets is pretty weak but the family tours application is just plain tenuous.
I'm generally a fan of Hat-trick's work so this disappoints me somewhat. Such a great opportunity to represent one of London's most unique museums.
It's really great to see the museum have a revamp, but I agree with Josh here.
The visuals being composed of brackets more evocative of the history of typography rather than the diverse history of the collection.
I do like the rather smart looking H logo being used elsewhere though.
+1 with Josh. It's nice, but far far FAR from "genius" or "brilliant". All the elements in use here have been done many times before - including the bookends. Where's the museum's personality?
Very nice logo, works superbly on the double & sliding doors. However my first impression in regards to the family tours and aquarium additions pamphlets are 'over the top' usage on the bracket front. My first impression with the gorgeous wrapping paper and bag was - Designer clothing label?
Clean. Smart. Sophisticated.
However, is it breakthrough work? No. But, what we don't know is, what was the client like? As we all know (or should) it takes a great client to do great work.
My impression is their client wanted a clean, smart and sophisticated identity, and knew they had it when they saw this direction.
This is very good thinking. Thank you for so wonderful work. Specially, I love the doors :-)
What a beautiful, elegant design. It works on everything.
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