Toledo Museum of Art Rebrand

In pursuit of becoming “everyone’s museum,” the renowned Toledo Museum of Art is launching a fresh rebrand created in partnership with Detroit-based creative agency Lafayette American’s design practice, Scorpion Rose Studio and the design studio Semi:Formal.

The Toledo Museum of Art (TMA) came to the table with a clear request: A desire to transform while honoring its legacy as an inclusive institution of culture and community for Toledo.  The rebrand was grounded on a strategic platform: The transformative power of art is for all of Toledo.

Lafayette American and Scorpion Rose Studio’s (SRS) work included both strategy and a holistic design system that will help TMA continue its journey toward the kind of modern museum they strive to be – one that has its doors open to all. 

When asked to describe the team in one word, Gary Gonya, Director of Brand Strategy for the Toledo Museum of Art said, “Romantic. They have a big heart and they deeply believe in the spirit of humanity and creativity. They are very alive and optimistic, yet they have the experience and know-how to make things happen. This is a team you’ll fall in love with.”

TMA, which has always been free to the public, has a multi-dimensional audience and the rebrand aims to connect everyone from neighbors and members to tourists. Uniquely located in a neighborhood setting, TMA’s location contributes to its ability to be an accessible point of connection for the community. Because of this, the rebrand showcases a T icon drawn from the campus footprint, which appears in transformative capacity throughout the museum, symbolizing the ever-evolving future of art.

The design team diligently researched the history of the city and the museum itself in order to create a brand identity reflective of the community. Along with the “T” icon, a point of pride for the city, the branding pays homage to Toledo’s history as The City of Glass, the alchemy and symbolism of glass is infused within the identity as well. 

“We knew the redesign of TMA’s visual identity system would need to be more than a new look. It needed to signal a change in perspective and an opening of their aperture— their commitment to quality and creating a culture of belonging,” says Meg Jannott, Partner & Head of Design, Lafayette American & Scorpion Rose Studio. “The collaborative nature of this team was absolutely instrumental in this process of developing this identity system and we’re collectively so proud of the outcome.”

Case Study:
Client: Toledo Museum of Art
Adam Levine, Museum Director
Gary Gonya, Director of Brand Strategy
Mark Yappueying, Graphic Design Manager
Aly Krajewski, Designer
Crystal Phelps, Marketing Manager
Agency: Lafayette American (with Scorpion Rose Studio)
Toby Barlow, Chief Creative Officer, Partner
Meg Jannott, Head of Design, Partner
Paolo Catalla (Semi:Formal), Senior Designer
Jon Wolfer, Senior Designer
Asha Cook, Designer
Cecilia Hong, Junior Designer
Aidan McKiernan, Copywriter/ACD
Beth Rea, Chief Strategy Officer
Doug James, Creative Strategist
Justin Morley, Senior Account Supervisor
Vu Nguyen, Associate Director, Project Management
Ben Bator, Chief Innovation Officer, Partner
Priya Tirtha, Senior UX Strategist
Web Development: Madhouse
Bill Sattler, Partner
Molly Luetke, Managing Director
Steve Mockensturm, Senior Developer
Ashley Moyer, Creative Director
Melanie Dunn, Designer/Digital Marketing Strategist
Bri Whiteside, Project Manager


Credits: Lafayette American, Scorpion Rose Studio, Semi:Formal

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