Soon after I started putting together the agenda for Monkigras 2015 I heard about the new Sweden Sans typeface, designed by MAC Rhino Fonts, as part of a project by the design agency Söderhavet to deliver a new unified brand identity for Sweden. Geeks generally love typography and great design, so I naturally had to ask Stefan Hattenbach, the typeface designer to talk at Monki Gras this year, given our theme. What I didn’t expect was that he would persuade Söderhavet to come along as well, to give us the full picture of the project, exposing the design process.
The brief – Sweden’s government asked us to develop a new identity for the country, to be used when communicating on behalf of Sweden. Our brief was to replace the many fragmented organizational identities of Swedish ministries, agencies and corporations with one integrated visual brand identity system, to unambiguously represent Sweden in the world.
The process – During the design process, we grappled with many questions, including: Which symbols best represent a country? How do we design a unified identity for use in extremely divergent contexts and on wildly different scales? Which parts of an identity should always be used, and which parts only in the right context? And how do we clarify when an organization is speaking on behalf of Sweden?
If you’re interested in the cultural role of design, at scale, you really don’t want to miss this talk. As ever at Monki Gras we’re as much about design, culture and craft as we are about code.
Get your tickets for Monki Gras here.