Pentagram creates a new brutalist logo for London

The world-famous design agency draws inspiration from the Barbican for London’s new Culture Mile identity
Pentagram's new Culture Mile identity. All images courtesy of
Pentagram's new Culture Mile identity. All images courtesy of

The Square Mile is the British capital’s business district, a part of the city more closely associated with financial services than with cultural innovation. However, this neighbourhood offers visitors much more than banking and expense-account restaurants.

The Barbican Centre, the Guildhall School for Music & Drama, the London Symphony Orchestra and the Museum of London all lie within the Square Mile. Over the next ten years, these institutions, working in conjunction with the area’s local government body, the City of London Corporation, hope to transform the Square Mile into a place filled with pop-up performances, art installations and free, public events, all under the aegis of a new organisation: Culture Mile.


Pentagram's new Culture Mile identity
Pentagram's new Culture Mile identity

The design agency Pentagram has created a visual identity for this new body, drawing on the stark, brutalist architecture of the Square Mile’s best-loved modernist landmark: the Barbican. These new letterforms “share the geometry of the Barbican’s world-famous brutalist architecture, making it both a holder and representative of the Culture Mile’s location,” explains Pentagram.

Thankfully, Pentagram has resisted the building’s austere concrete colour palette, adding instead some vibrant shades to its new identity, which should become a pretty familiar sight around this part of London from July onwards. Here’s to a bright, brutal summer.



For more on brutalism get This Brutal World; for more great graphic design get Graphic.

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