OBJECTIVE

The American Museum in Britain needed a new brand identity to reflect a revised visitor offer. This independent museum receives no government funding. However, the trustees and management team have set out an ambitious plan to transform the museum and increase the number of visitors.

CHALLENGE

The creation of the New American Garden is the first stage of the process, and the new brand identity had to reposition the museum as a country house experience with extensive gardens.

As the only museum outside the US to showcase the decorative arts of America, it was also important to differentiate the American Museum from other museums and visually identify its strong offering.

SOLUTION

We began by working with the client to identify the brand values and to understand what makes the museum unique over and above the American connection. As part of this process it was decided to change the name to the American Museum & Gardens.

These brand values were carried through into the design, most obviously with the colours, which reference the US flag.

The motif takes as its starting point the internationally recognised symbol for a museum, adapted to reflect the neoclassical style of the museum’s main building, Claverton Manor, which features four Ionic pilasters and a pediment on the south façade. The star symbol in the centre of the motif echoes the family coat of arms in the tympanum of the house.

The curve at the base of the logo mirrors the shape of the Winding Way footpath through the New American Garden. It also reflects the gentle slope of the gardens away from the house down towards the Limpley Stoke Valley.

We are in the process of applying the new identity across all the brand touchpoints: staff uniform, signage, exhibition interpretation panels, printed literature and social media.

Finally, we produced a comprehensive set of brand guidelines which include tone of voice guidance, which adapts the values for use in all communications by the museum.

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“I have immensely enjoyed working with Sue Bush and her colleagues on the rebranding of the American Museum & Gardens. Touchpoint Design offers a comprehensive process, from logo and signage to website design and ‘tone of voice’ counselling. I recommend Touchpoint’s work without hesitation.”

Dr Richard Wendorf, Director

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