The Eden Project has been given its first rebrand in its 22-year history courtesy of SomeOne. Inspired by natural forms and with a focus on positivity, the new identity aims to tackle the planetary emergency with a proactive voice.
Since opening in 2001, the Eden Project has quickly become one of Cornwall's most popular tourist attractions. Its futuristic biomes attract visitors from far and wide to marvel at its diverse selection of plant life, but with the climate crisis constantly escalating, the Eden Project is repositioning itself as a leading voice in the environmental movement.
To do this, the Eden Project has worked with London-based creative agency SomeOne to develop a new identity focusing on the positive action people can take in the face of the climate crisis. Taking its lead from organic shapes and natural colours, the rebrand is all about "transforming negatives into positives" and engaging with as wide an audience as possible.
The rebrand comes at a crucial time. Environmental concerns have ratcheted up dramatically since the Eden Project opened over two decades ago, and data from the Copernicus Climate Change Service recently announced that 2023 is "on track" to be the warmest on record.
In the face of this information, it's all too easy to feel overwhelmed. Individuals can feel powerless despite the lifestyle changes they have made, leading to a sense of apathy or even denial. But while this is an understandable reaction, it's not the only one. Instead, people can unite and strategise to take proactive action, and it's this attitude the Eden Project rebrand is seeking to spearhead.
"There are lots of voices complaining about what humans have done and continue to do to Planet Earth," says Simon Manchipp, founder at SomeOne, who was chosen by the Eden Project to bring together every facet of the organisation. "But few that offer viable, clear and positive action plans to reverse the damage.
"Eden is uniquely able to both raise, answer and guide the biggest concerns regarding humans' ability to continue living here successfully – and we're starting to build a better way to open those conversations with the new brand."
At the heart of the new brand architecture is the idea of transformation, plus the theme of reflecting the beauty of the natural world. Mimicking the theory that there are no straight lines in nature, the linework in the logo and accompanying graphics seems to flow and bend like budding shoots and running rivers.
Alongside the work revealed this week, SomeOne has also compiled a design system to prepare for the Eden Project's expansion into new locations, including Morecambe and Dundee. This will result in a more streamlined approach to co-branding with partner organisations.
"Our reimagined BrandWorld reflects the desire to restore the planet to its natural balance," says James Bell, lead designer at SomeOne. "Organic and informative – the new identity helps amplify the Eden Project's voice as a pioneer on the path to a sustainable future."
The studio's account director, Victoria Davis, adds: "The Eden Project rebrand comes at such a pivotal time to be shouting about the planetary emergency and highlighting the actions we can all take to create a more sustainable future. With cut-through headlines, our ambition is to get people to stop, listen and ultimately change behaviours."
SomeOne is keen to stress the time for action is today. Punchy copy drives this message home in the identity, with messages such as "change habits, not temperatures" and "Protect Repair Respect" singing out in refreshing greens and whites.
As Richard Rhodes, ECD at SomeOne, points out, Eden is a brand that should be on "everyone's mind and in everyone's conversations." This is because he believes that only then will behaviour start to adapt. "The new brand work looks to help open those conversations in the right way at the right time (which is right now)."
The brand strikes a perfect balance between the urgency of its message and the beauty of nature, whether out in the wild or in the safety of the Eden Project's biomes. In a sector that's all too quick to shame people for their habits and consequences, SomeOne's identity is conscious, assertive, yet hopeful. Now, it's up to the rest of us to heed their call.
"We need to speak with a louder voice to tackle the challenges facing the planet, and our new identity gives us the platform to do this, helping us to increase our impact amongst existing and new audiences," concludes Emma Evans, chief marketing officer at the Eden Project.
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