by Jerry ElengicalMay 26, 2021
A partner at Pentagram, Marina Willer, and her team have designed a new visual branding identity for the Moholy-Nagy Foundation in lieu of the foundation’s mission to promote, research and preserve the legacy of László Moholy-Nagy’s life and work.
László Moholy-Nagy, an intellectual born in Hungary, was a skilled artist, photographer, filmmaker, and a writer. He taught as a professor at the Bauhaus school, and one of his biggest accomplishments was having established the Chicago School of Design (now known as the IIT Institute of Design, a part of Illinois Institute of Technology) in the 1930s, which was soon dubbed as the ‘New Bauhaus’.
The Moholy-Nagy Foundation was established in 2003, led by his daughter Hattula Moholy-Nagy. The foundation wanted to preserve and archive all of the artist’s works online, while developing new programs, affiliations and partnerships to keep his legacy alive. Along with the online archive, the foundation offers authentication service for providing accurate information to public and private entities.
The new branding for the foundation was designed with the artist’s methods and mind-set kept in focus. Moholy-Nagy was known for his experimental photographs using light, which were called photograms and these directly informed Marina and her design team’s craft-based approach for creating the new visual identity. A set of hand-made typographic form were created in the studio using a series of projections with light and water, making the letterforms appear wispy and fluid.
The typeface used for this project is Riposte provided by the Good Type Foundry. Inspired by mid-century fonts, the neo-grotesque typeface also incorporates contemporary features, which can bring a sense of modernity to the brand identity while staying true to the archival language. Moholy-Nagy’s works and mediums have also influenced the palette for the visual identity. A more neutral and restrained colour palette containing black and white and sand has been used to make sure it can be used across all applications and fit alongside any artwork.
The distinctive typographic wordmark is displayed on all of the foundation’s printed matter and online as well—including letterheads, business cards and more. Marina and her team also designed the foundation’s website.
(Text by Shreeparna Chatterjee, editorial trainee at stirworld.com)