Australia’s oldest museum rebrands with zig-zag

Sydney’s Australian Museum, founded 188 years ago, has been rebranded with a zig-zag, which aims to represent shapes found in fossils and artefacts.

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Australia’s oldest museum has been rebranded to coincide with the opening of a new permanent exhibition space.

Sydney’s Australian Museum was founded in 1827 as a natural history exhibition space, and has since expanded to include scientific research and cultural exhibitions.

The new visual identity, designed by Australian consultancy 303Lowe, features a zig-zag marque spelling out the letters “AM” in the “red and ochre earth tones of Australia”, says the museum.

Kim McKay, executive director and CEO at the Australian Museum, says of the new branding: “It is contemporary yet reflects the zig-zag pattern found on many of the Museum’s cultural and natural science collections from Australia and the Pacific.”

Therese Leuver, art director at 303Lowe, adds that the zig-zag is a metaphor for living creatures. “A zig-zag continues, moves in all directions and takes form in fossils, artefacts, animal prints and rock and mineral textures,” she says. “It appears as tracks across desert sands and in nature’s patterns of chaos.”

The new logo and updated brand colours have already been implemented on the museum’s website, which has integrated the zig-zag pattern as the homepage backdrop. The visual identity is also set to feature on the exterior of all of the Australian Museum buildings.

AM’s rebrand has launched just before the opening of the museum’s new Crystal Hall entrance, which will incorporate zig-zag shapes into its glass pleats, and the Wild Planet gallery, the museum’s first new permanent exhibition space in 50 years. Both will open in September.

The 188-year-old Australian Museum features exhibitions on animals including birds, dinosaurs and insects, alongside displays on minerals, Egyptian mummies, the sea, a wildlife photographer exhibition, and others. The new Wild Planet gallery will feature 400 animals from around the world, says the museum.

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