The art gallery as leisure experience is one of the cultural phenomena of our times. It’s a competitive market where, it seems, for good or ill, no new venture can now afford to launch without an understanding of its brand and its visual expression.
The Kalmar Konstmuseum is a new space for contemporary art in southern Sweden. Stockholm-based studio Sweden Graphics were invited to design the identity and signage for the building, which revolves around a giant, bold, yellow square applied throughout.
“We decided early on that we wanted to paint on the surface of the building’s walls,” explains Sweden’s Nille Svensson. “The stairwell is a bit of a concrete love affair and we wanted something to kind of ‘bounce off’ that aesthetic but at the same time work alongside the existing material.
“We designed a new typeface called Kalmar Sans in a stencil and a non-stencil version, the stencil for big type and the other for type in print etc. The base for the signage is the yellow square which then also became the base for the identity and graphics that appear on stationery. This square is painted directly over the concrete surface and at some locations it passes over surfaces in lacquered wood, so accentuating the idea that the square is almost ‘slapped on’. We also designed a huge 3×3m yellow logo in solid concrete and stuck it into the soil outside the museum.”
Sweden has designed the museum’s new site at kalmarkonstmuseum.se and templates for posters and catalogues which will be produced in-house by the museum.