Frieze marks its 30th anniversary with a fresh look

The typography-led identity is designed by Pentagram’s Luke Powell and Jody Hudson-Powell, while Frieze creative director David Lane has developed an accompanying campaign that puts the art front and centre

Founded in 1991, over the last three decades Frieze has built up an artistic empire comprising three publications – Frieze, Frieze Week and Frieze Masters Magazine – and four international art fairs in London, New York and Los Angeles.

In recent years, the organisation’s scope also expanded to include digital platform Frieze Viewing Room, alongside editorial initiatives such as podcasts and talks. But the growth of the organisation and the development of various sub-brands had led to a range of different visual identities and wordmarks being in use.

As Frieze celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, it has unveiled a refreshed look that brings all of these sub-brands together under a more consistent overarching visual identity.

Creative director David Lane approached Pentagram partners Luke Powell and Jody Hudson-Powell to work out how the organisation’s various identities could work better both separately and together, as well as being flexible enough to accommodate further expansion of the Frieze brand in the future.

The duo landed on a more ownable typographic solution based on Frieze magazine’s classic masthead, originally created by Tom Gidley and later redesigned by Paul Barnes.

Designed in collaboration with NaN’s Luke Prowse, the new typographic system retains some of the unique qualities of the masthead, such as curved brackets and slab serifs, but adds uppercase and full character sets and appears in four different weights.

The Frieze typeface has been paired with Sina Nova, a supporting serif typeface that has a high legibility and aims to lend a warmth and intelligence to the branding.

It’s a stripped back approach designed not to dictate the art organisation’s creative output. Alongside the typographic system, a colour palette of black and white has been introduced to allow the work of artists to be the real star of the show.

This approach is mirrored in Lane’s creative direction for Frieze’s series of anniversary campaigns, which will roll out over the course of this year, and will feature artist collaborations including New York artist Zach Lieberman and photographer Chris Rhodes.