Pentagram gives Nashville’s beloved Frist Art Museum an Art Deco inspired sans-serif upgrade
"Realizing the significance of the museum’s Art Deco heritage the Pentagram team created a new logotype featuring the words 'Frist Art Museum", set in a friendlier upper and lowercase in a contemporary sans-serif typeface called Cádiz, except for the letter 's' in 'Frist' which resembles the snake-like, Art Deco letter 's' of the museum’s original logotype" notes Pentagram of The Frist's visual upgrade.
"The original identity adopted by the Frist Center for the Visual Arts in 2001 featured a mark that was a line drawing of one of the elaborate Art Deco tiles found in the building. The mark was locked-up with the word 'Frist' set in all-caps in a slender vintage 30s font. The Art Deco style letter 'S' in the word took the form of an elongated snake. That original word mark was affixed to the front façade, above what was previously the main entrance to the building, and on the back of the building, which has now been designated as the primary entrance. At some point the Frist identity was updated and the Art Deco style logo was dropped. The new logotype, which consisted of the words 'The Frist' set all-caps in a generic san serif typeface and reversed out of a black rectangle, was an attempt to modernize the museum’s identity and to emphasize the catchier handle, 'The Frist,' over the wordy descriptor, 'Center for the Visual Arts.' It did look more modern than the previous Art Deco iteration but it lacked personality. Even though the museum had adopted a new identity the previous Art Deco style identity remained affixed to the exterior of the building. It was still there when the Pentagram team was approached about working with the Frist to develop a new name and identity" adds Pentagram. "At the end of the day, the goal was to give the museum a modern identity that is simple, confident, and has staying power―that will still feel fresh and undated in ten years―but also pays tribute to the institution’s Art Deco roots".
Learn more of the project here.