A celebration of music at Knock Basilica
Arts & Culture
The Arts Council of Ireland is the government agency responsible for developing the arts in Ireland. Since 2019, a new brand identity system has been developed with a vibrant suite of colours, typography sets, logos and other brand assets. Building on the existing logotype with the introduction of the new corporate font, Patron, a powerful and cohesive institutional voice is created while consistency and recognition remain through familiarity. Adjustments to spacing and optical alignment of the logotype were instilled to increase legibility, especially at smaller sizes and on-screen.
Patron is an expressive and modern grotesk, chosen for its wide range of weights, its legibility and character. A signature stencil style of Patron was designed to help with hierarchies and differentiation.
While the logotype is widely recognised, it alone is not enough to continually carry the spirit of the organisation. A flexible system was required that would support communications material across print, web and environmental applications. The new system employs prominent use of the logo as a graphic device consistently applied and a brighter colour palette to create a bold, contemporary image.
The Arts Council operate a series of public facing initiatives, spanning a diverse range of topics. A separate identity is often required for each to create distinction. Maintaining a visual link with the parent brand in order to remain identifiable while injecting enough creativity for the initiative to stand alone, is always an important consideration.
A big part of the redesign involved tackling the funding logos. The new visually simplified suite makes use of Patron Stencil and a robust set of usage guidelines make it easy for every funding recipient to correctly apply the relevant logo in their print and digital outputs.
In collaboration with motion-designer Cian McKenna, a video piece was produced to launch the logo set to all of the arts bodies. Showing examples of the logos in use, layered over footage taken from funded exhibitions, performances and events, this piece succeeded in generating real excitement amongst audiences, both internally and externally with arts organisations and designers.
In 2022, the Arts Council turned 70, triggering a year of celebration for one of Ireland's most prized cultural institutions. A signature logo set was commissioned to encourage funded organisations to get involved in the celebrations throughout the year.
Using the square shape from the existing Arts Council logo as a building block, a 70 was crafted while retaining the overall height and width. This helped to establish a relationship between the corporate and celebratory logo sets.
Both Irish and English versions of the logo were created with a keyline option for primary usage and a solid fill secondary option for optimum use in a busy context. This allowed content or artwork behind to shine through, added a sense of modernity to the logo.
Turning 70 was a source of great pride within the Arts Council, it allowed for a year of reflection, discovery and planning. Many projects were commissioned during the year as part of the 70 year celebration which were adorned with the signature logo.
'We have worked with CI Studio since March 2019 on our brand strategy, getting our brand architecture and funding logos updated, and creating visual identities for all activities and services under our remit within the brand framework they devised. In all this time, we have found them to be a great partner, thoroughly responsive, always creative, working to agreed and tight deadlines and within budget. I would have no hesitation in recommending them.'
Head of Press and Communications,
The Arts Council of Ireland