Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) is one of the nation’s most innovative contemporary art centers that expands and extends what an art center can be. Founded in 1993 as the cultural anchor of the Yerba Buena Gardens development, they serve the diverse and ever-evolving community that surrounds them. From their leading edge exhibitions, performances, and films, to their groundbreaking civic initiatives and community partnerships, YBCA is where creativity, people, and new ideas collide. Their mission is to generate culture that moves people, because they believe it’s the responsibility of arts organizations to spur and support major societal movements.
While YBCA is a new kind of art center, whose work spans the realms of art, civic engagement and public life, much of the San Francisco community knew them only as a venue or host for performances and events. There was a general lack of awareness around their vision and dedication to redefining what an art center can and should be, and this was at the core of the creative challenge we were asked to help solve through creating a new identity and communications strategy.
The visual identity and communications were brought to life across all touch-points including signage, exhibition graphics, brochures, posters, outdoor advertising, identity guidelines, and a new website created in partnership with Bureau for Visual Affairs. Designed by Manual.
In a world where laminates are called fake, cheap and plastic-y, how can you make them stand out to a community that lives and breathes good design?
Arauco, a global manufacturer of sustainable wood products, came to Matchstic with the challenge of helping them create the identity for their new laminate brand, Prism, and win a piece of the A&D market from better-known brands with big, flashy appeal.
teamed up with YO! Sushi to refine their brand strategy and refresh their look and feel.
YO! Sushi is a place where people can experience a true taste of modern Tokyo. The brand idea and menu launch campaign centred around ‘This is Tokyo’ as a concept. So this meant…
1. & SMITH
hero-ed the authenticity of the dishes on the menu. All YO’s food is inspired by Japanese classics, street food or home dishes.
2. The design take cues from anime / manga culture (but translated in a modern way).
3. & SMITH
didn’t have to dumb anything down. We introduced Kanji script to menu and made sure all sections were named as they would be in Tokyo. The launch campaign leads with Japanese dish names so everyone can learn the difference between Takoyaki (octopus filled dough balls) and Okonomiyaki (street food pancakes).
4. YO! are the ears to the ground for what’s going on in Tokyo right now.
Alex Bibby is a product photographer, but not just any product photographer, one that gets it. And when we say ‘it’ we mean understands the delicate balance between technical competence and creative thought. Expressing this balance was our focus when designing his identity and materials. The marque we developed used his name but was designed to allude to it rather than simply be ‘Bibby’ written. This marque was used discretely off line and used in a bigger, bolder way online to mask his photography.
The District used high quality materials in a palette of greys and we hand embossed and foil blocked his materials with unerring precision – a reference to his photographic style. The website is very stripped back which allows the most important thing, the photographs, to be the focus (excuse the pun).