London-based agency The Plant has created the branding and identity for the new Seven Dials Market food fair in Covent Garden, taking a banana that might look a little familiar to some as its central icon.
To us at least, the image instantly evokes Andy Warhol’s iconic image for The Velvet Underground & Nico’s self-titled debut album; and it makes for a very fun identity indeed.
The market is sited in a 24,000 square foot space just off Seven Dials, with interiors designed by Stiff + Trevillion. "It’s an iconic building, and an iconic location, that deserves an iconic identity," says The Plant’s creative director Matt Utber. "We used the building’s history as a storehouse for bananas as the starting point, creating a series of unique, colourful drawings that get used across the building and all of the branding."
The banana icon is used across signage, marketing and the market’s online presence, and was seen in the hoardings during the renovation of the building to "create some curiosity around Covent Garden, and begin to establish a strong, iconic identity for the experience," says The Plant. The banana was also made into a huge sculptural piece inside the market, designed by The Plant "to be sat on, touched and Instagrammed," the agency says. Outside the Earlham Street entrance visitors are greeted by two large banana signs—one in vibrant pink, the other a more traditional yellow—"aimed at establishing a landmark for Covent Garden and the market."
Stiff + Trevillion's interior designs saw the space broken down into two distinct sections: 'Cucumber Alley' houses a row of speciality produce stalls, and 'Banana Warehouse' comprises several countertop cafes and street food kitchens, as well as the communal seating.
Seven Dials Market was developed by street food incubators and accelerators Kerb, and hols more than 20 different vendors selling everything from doughnuts to Bao buns and "the world’s first cheese conveyor belt restaurant", according to The Plant. The market also houses the Market Bookshop, which sells food-based and recipe books, and uses an identity based on the handwriting of Kerb’s founder, Petra Barran.