Wolff Olins rebrands New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art

The new logo is described by the Met as “a hybrid that combines serif and sans-serif”. The museum adds: “There may be some debate about the logo, because it involves change.”

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Wolff Olins is working on a new identity for New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, to replace the existing branding which has been in use since 1971.

The new logo was first revealed by New York magazine. The identity has now been revealed in full.

The Met says the new identity will be launched on 1 March and will be part of “a clear graphic language” that will “create greater clarity and consistency in The Met experience and communication across all its locations… and online”.

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A spokeswoman for the museum says: “The new logo no longer relies on symbols and, instead, is based on the commonly used name ‘The Met’, which has an immediacy that speaks to all audiences.

“It is an original drawing, a hybrid that combines and connects serif and sans serif, classical and modern letterforms. In this respect, it reflects the scope of the Museum’s collection and the connections that exist within it.”

The spokeswoman says the new branding will be accompanied by a new map, wayfinding and advertising, as well as a new website.

She adds: “There may be debate about the logo, because it involves change, but the museum chose it because it represents something simple, bold, and indisputable: The Met is here for everyone.”

The current Met logo, in use since 1971
The current Met logo, in use since 1971

The existing logo is understood to have been in use since 1971 and is based on a letter M which was adapted from the 16th century book De Divina Proportione, by Luca Pacioli, an associate of Leonardo da Vinci.

Discover more:

“It’s about connections” – Wolff Olins on its new Met logo

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Comments
  • Mike Dempsey February 19, 2016 at 11:52 am

    I am wondering if this is an early April fools prank? Who would want to change that perfect M?

  • D Conran February 19, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    It’s getting a lot of criticism for giving equal weight to the ‘THE’ & ‘MET’ type – Personally I think it looks like something ‘Damien Thorn’ would have created!

  • Deborah Budd February 19, 2016 at 8:58 pm

    I can just imagine my late typography prof doing a face palm. He revered letterforms and tsk-tsk’d when students mashed letters together. Anyway, as someone who visits New York frequently, I never call the Metropolitan “The Met” (That’s already reserved for The Metropolitan Opera at Lincoln Center). I occasionally say “The Met Museum.” Wolff Olins has missed badly on this one. And I hate to see the classic Lucia Pacioli design disappear. (It decorates my favorite coffee mug!)

  • Mark North February 21, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    Reminds me of an Economist advert in a traffic pile-up.

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