Logo Trends: Variations (#1) – Wolff Olins

After a logo design I developed a month or two ago, with emphasis on promoting diversity, I’ve noticed more and more “logos”showing multiple variations, and thus a more versatile application of branding and corporate identity. And, arguably, a more creative feel. I feel like corporate identity has always previously felt a little solid, conventional – and yet in need of constant reinvention to keep fresh. The evolution of NBC and Pepsi stand out.

If I were to chose a designer/agency that best demonstrated the concept of variation within corporate identity, I’d have to say Wolff Olins do so pretty well. Regardless of how controversial and questionably conceptual the logo design for London 2012 is, in my opinion it showcases the use of variations in logo applications perfectly. The logo image is unconventional, striking and iconic (whether or not it could be interpreted as Lisa and Bart Simpson in an unflattering position) – and the application of various bold colours and images within the iconic shape promotes the modern, energetic and diverse atmosphere the games hope to capture. Just considering how to analyse it for this post has, actually, diminished my uncertainty as to its aesthetic awkwardness.

I’ve posted about one of these before, but Wolff Olins have also branded two art galleries which are incredibly relevant here – the Asian Art Museum and the New Museum – the logos of which have variations that use either image or text to promote the numerous styles and works that the galleries present – vital to capture the diversity within art.


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