Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New logo: Bolshoi Theatre

Last week, a new visual identity was unveiled for Moscow's historic Bolshoi Theatre. The new logo was developed by Art Lebedev Studio, and should formally launch at the end of this month, when the theatre opens after major renovations.

Founded in 1776, the Boshoi (Большой театр, meaning "The Great Theatre") is an important symbol for Russian high culture and is well-known around the world.

The previous logo was introduced a few years ago and is credited to Yuri Grymov. It had been the target of criticism from Russia's design community, among other things because it apparently featured decorations borrowed from a free image library.

Previous logo.

It appears not using the theatre's facade was out of the question. It is an important visual asset, well-known around Russia, and featured on the reverse side of the 100 ruble bill. The agency eventually settled for a classical image featuring a detailed "engraving" of the facade and a serif typeface without decorations.

Art Lebedev Studio has posted a very detailed description of the design process, literally featuring hundreds of sketches. The studio has also published the following images that show different versions of the new visual identity.

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Alternate versions.

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A "triumphant" version, featuring Thalia and Melpomene, the ancient Greek muses of theatre.

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Versions for small print.

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The new logo on a purple background, creating some interesting contrast between the classic and the modern.

Студия Артемия Лебедева
РИА Новости
On the previous identity

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