First played in 1916, COPA América (American Cup) is the oldest international soccer competition, played every four years in a different South American country from team members of CONMEBOL, the continental governing body of association football in South America. Since 1993, the tournament hosts 10 cities from the continent and 2 invited teams from other countries (like Mexico, Canada, or the U.S.). Next year, the tournament will be played in Chile and the identity has been designed by Brandia Central (who have developed an interesting niche in sports events identities like this).
The strategic work culminated on a strong recommendation: this edition of COPA América would be the start of something new, being the first with a “host-inspired brand”. Instead of presenting an “institutional-based brand” (focusing on COPA America’s tournament), like the previous ones, this edition’s brand would present Chile as proud host, showing its influence on the brand visuals.
The Chilean culture was the background for all the creative process: the 5-point star of the national flag, the 8-point star as an old national symbol as well as a reminder of the 8 host cities, the kultrun (ancient tribal drum) design, the human visual representations from folk culture representing 4 values: Celebration, Passion, Surpass and Triumph. In other words, a fan (or “hincha”, in spanish), a heart, two contenders and the most beautiful football move of all — the bicycle kick, aka “Chilena” (Chilean). All of these elements were then revisited through a modern visual approach. Portraying a modern, ambitious and cheerful country.
While it was nice to have consistency throughout the previous tournaments with some kind of flag-leading-to-a-ball structure, all those logos are forgettable and uninspiring. Now, like the FIFA World Cup and other large-scale sports with a lot of wait time in between its editions, the Copa América has a host-specific identity with more flavor, relevance, and potential engagement.
The new logo has plenty of elements and references — perhaps too many — and is rendered in Brandia Central’s signature gradient style. It makes for an intriguing symbol that invites further exploration. I could have done without the four player icons in the logo but if the premise is more-is-more (which it seems to be) then it works. The “Copa América” typography is fine and unassuming while the “Chile 2015” demands all the attention. There is some disconnect between the hard angles of the icon and the overly scripty typography. In application, though, it’s clear that there is a maximalist approach that promotes the combination of all kinds of visuals.
I love the icon set, particularly the “chilena” (far right). Not sure about the second one, with the two players bumping crotches.
The identity starts getting far too diverse here, with the introduction of this type style that feels overly trendy, not in the right way.
As a whole, with all the diverse and seemingly disparate elements, the identity comes together quite energetically and there is an overall great texture to the work even if at times you are left scratching your head of why there is so much stuff. More importantly, this identity provides a solid springboard for future tournament identities.