A bold, yet distinctly Scandinavian identity for a food festival inspired by seeing farmers as 'rockstars'

Scandinavian Design Group is behind some striking new branding for Matstreif, the largest food festival in Norway.

The event, which takes place in Oslo in September, now bears new designs across all touchpoints including printed materials, staff uniforms, lanyards, promotional banners, lanyards, tote bags and more.

According to the agency's creative lead and designer Nicklas Haslestad, the team was briefed to create a new visual identity for the festival's 2019 edition to attract more visitors. Following initial research, he says that the "need for a stronger, different and more modern identity emerged."

The new identity merges the Scandi reserve and pared-back approach we'd expect with bold colours and a distinctive typeface, the bespoke font Smaks Sans, created in-house by Scandinavian Design Group. The name of the font translates as Sans of Taste, and the variable nature of the typeface means it can be applied to numerous different touchpoints and brought to life in animated forms online.

Haslestad says the overall aim of the new identity was to "to be visually striking in both Oslo and Norway in general - an active approach to reverse the trend of declining visitor numbers." The visual aspects including the typeface, bold colours and a new illustration style are complemented by a new approach to illustration and documentary-esque photography style. The tone of voice was reworked to be "tasteful and humorous" while aligning with the overall feel of vibrancy and flexibility.

Inspiration for the designs was drawn from music festivals to add more energy, vibrancy and dynamism to things. "The festival and identity are filled with life, taste, humour and energy," says Haslestad. "The farmers, their origins and food are put in the centre and became rock stars for the weekend."

According to Scandinavian Design Group, following the launch of the 2019 identity, visitor numbers increased dramatically.


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