MadeTo creates expressive new identity for an old but future-facing arts institution

The Kortrijk Conservatory is one of the leading institutions for the performing arts in West Flanders and celebrates its 150th birthday this year. Belgian design agency C was commissioned to create a new brand identity for the institution that both launches to mark this historic anniversary and look to the future.

The Conservatory focuses on music, spoken word and dance, working with people aged between five and 99 years-old.

"After all these years the Conservatory is still buzzing with ambition," says MadeTo, adding that its goals are to encourage more cross-fertilisation between beginners and advanced students and become "a place where young and old can exercise their passion – from enthusiast to added value seeker and aspiring artist."

The main challenge was to create a brand that stood out in an area that already boasted numerous art institutions. So the new identity forms the basis of a reworked house style that "leaves room for creativity, just like the organisation itself," says MadeTo.

The new simplified logo uses an abstract graphic emblem that "reflects the feeling of expression," says the agency, and means it can be used across numerous applications in an instantly recognisable, dynamic way. The idea of creative expression is also reflected in the use of large coloured areas with contrasting typography to make the designs striking, yet accessible.

The building blocks that form the logo can be separated and reconfigured across various campaign materials, such as in posters as an overlaid branding element over photography; on posters; across merchandise such as tote bags and even on the large flags that signpost the building.


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