New visual identity for Kunstmuseum Den Haag

New identity Kunstmuseum Den Haag

As of today, the museum will officially be known as Kunstmuseum Den Haag. The new name makes it clear to the public what the museum is, and what it stands for: a diverse museum of art (Kunstmuseum) with firm ties to the city of The Hague (Den Haag) and its residents. The first exhibition that the museum will present under its new name is Monet – The Garden Paintings. The museum’s new logo has just been revealed, ahead of the opening on 12 October.

Kunstmuseum Den Haag’s logo is part of a new visual identity that is based on the museum’s building, designed by Berlage, and on its collection. It pays homage to Berlage’s distinctive yellow brick that has defined the look of the museum since 1935 – distinctive not only for its colour, but also its elongated shape. The proportions match the eleven-centimetre unit that architect H.P. Berlage used throughout the building. The concept for the new house style was devised in collaboration with KesselsKramer.

The new logo also includes an eye-catching ‘K’ designed by Peter Bil’ak. The idea for the design came from the museum’s collection of graphic works. Bil’ak drew inspiration from the work of designer Piet Zwart, more specifically a typeface Zwart used in advertisements for cable manufacturer Nederlandsche Kabelfabriek in Delft, where he worked as the in-house designer between 1923 and 1933. Bil’ak used the basic structure of Zwart’s K, but has given it a contemporary twist. The resulting design is in keeping with the Hague typographic tradition. The rest of the name is written in Ping, a typeface developed by Bil’ak’s design studio Typotheque.

'The typography of the new logo refers to something that already exists, but also adds something new'

- Peter Biľak

‘I started with the idea that Kunstmuseum Den Haag is a Hague museum with international status’, Bil’ak explains. ‘The typography of the new logo refers to something that already exists, but also adds something new. It is exciting, challenging and it projects an image of a contemporary and diverse institution.’

From today, the logo will be on display at the museum, from Bil’ak’s very first sketches by hand. The new house style will gradually be revealed over the coming months, as we introduce it in newsletters, poster marketing campaigns and other online and offline communications.

‘The new name and visual identity are appropriate for the museum of today and of the past,’ says director Benno Tempel, ‘a museum co-founded by artists and housed in an architectural work of art. We provide a space for all kinds of artistic expression, and will continue to do so in the future. We are keen to share this space with a broad and diverse audience, and the new name will help us enable everyone to get close to art. Art is emotion; it gives us all energy, each in our own way.’