Say hello to our new logo
Corporate logos are everywhere. They are so prevalent and deceptively simple that we often don’t recognize that they are extraordinarily sophisticated little symbols that carry a disproportionate amount of communication responsibility. For good reason, logo design is an elite field of an already complex business; the brainiest of all graphic design. To quote legendary graphic designer Paul Rand:
The principal role of a logo is to identify, and simplicity is its means... Its effectiveness depends on distinctiveness, visibility, adaptability, memorability, universality, and timelessness.
That’s a tall order. It’s all about identity, and part of the process of rebuilding a museum like ours is to rebuild its identity. The logo is a key feature and becomes nearly as important as the design of the museum itself because the logo is often the first impression that people will get of it. If our sophisticated new museum has a logo that looks like it belongs on a box of breakfast cereal, we may have difficulty attracting an audience. Conversely, it is possible to have a logo that is too impressive, that promises too much. Mr. Rand speaks again:
A logo derives meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolizes, not the other way around.
In the case of our logo development, many questions needed to be answered. Does it reflect our content? Is it memorable? Is it unique? Will it work alongside the Bank of Canada logo? Does it evoke our building? Can it work in multiple sizes? Does it make me look fat? OK, that last one’s pretty low on the list, but all the demands made upon this humble little design are a bit mind-boggling.
And here it is. What do you think? Nice, eh? We like it. It’s a very flexible design and right now our graphics team is busy adapting it to a dozen different uses and formats. We believe it will serve us a long time and now we just have to make sure our new museum will be up to our logo’s standard. No problem there.
The Museum Blog
New acquisitions–2021 edition
The Bank of Canada Museum is responsible for the National Currency Collection, and part of its mandate is to foster and develop that collection. Despite the challenges of collecting during a pandemic, curators at the Bank of Canada Museum have acquired some unique artifacts—including some that document the pandemic itself.
The true value of money
What is money—when you really stop to think about it? To understand how money works, and what it ultimately represents, we need to strip it down to its very basic function.
The 1911 silver dollar
The 1911 silver dollar has a history to match its prestige, and it now has a permanent home in the National Currency Collection of the Bank of Canada Museum.
The $20 bill of 1969 was the prototype of the Scenes of Canada note series. Yet, as more notes were designed, the theme—and the $20 note itself—would change.