ayana baltrip balagas | design : speak

Noted: A discussion on the new logo for the Oakland Museum of CA @Brand New.

Posted in Branding, Commentary, Design, Noted by ayanabaltrip on 2009/12/10

What do you think?

Join the discussion at: http://www.underconsideration.com/brandnew/archives/more_oak_less_cal.php

Also let me know what you think by adding a comment here as well.

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4 Responses

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  1. Cherie Carter said, on 2009/12/11 at 03:21

    When I first saw it, I thought, “Oh, nice–the focus is OMCA rather than just CA,” BUT, that they could have worked more with that. The unrelenting caps of the other letters doesn’t really work for me. I also read MUMSEUM at first. Even with the letters set in different sizes, it’s very one-dimensional. Flat. All the caps just scream “Notice me, I’m insecure.” I like the orange. Sunny, warm, friendly, California. Even though it’s not totally Helvetica, (a little Gotham, a little Futura maybe) it looks like it is at first glance. Decades-old, other-museum fare. The Oakland Museum can be fascinating, surprising and thrilling. It is friendly and accessible, and I thought absolutely sure of its identity. I would have liked MY museum to sport a logo more expressive of its own special identity (that I can identify with). Brand, baby. But, who knows, the 60s are making a comeback in design now. I’m all for simplifying the out-of-control unreadable stuff, but — hey wait a minute, wait a minute, Ayana, what do YOU think???

    • ayanabaltrip said, on 2009/12/11 at 19:13

      Although, one could argue that the museum name in the old logo/mark is overshadowed by the CA, the new mark design completely obliterates the focus on the museum name. There is an elegance to the old mark also.

      The legibility is difficult. It is hard to discern Oakland from Museum from CA. The visual hierarchy fails. The letter kerning is off. It’s a throw-back to what people were doing way better in the ’90s. WAIT! and the 60s, the ’20s and the ’30s….

      I would have liked to have seen more time expended on development. Perhaps it was, and this is what the “client” wanted. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall when the presentations of the logo iterations were made.

      Thanks for sharing your great insight.

  2. emancipateoluwakemi said, on 2009/12/22 at 01:03

    I agree with Ayana. I was not a huge fan of the previous logo but this one seems vacant to me. It would have been appealing to see a marriage between the classic and modern/old and new. That is what Oakland and California represent. If and san serif and serif font were used for the redesign, that might have been interesting to see.

    • ayanabaltrip said, on 2009/12/22 at 20:37

      It would have been nice to see what iterations were presented. Thanks for commenting here Oluwakemi, and thanks for first making me aware of the original blog post. I hope you commented there as well.


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