Established in 1800, the Rijksmuseum (State Museum in English) in Amsterdam is home to more than 900,000 items in its collection, including a large amount of masterpieces from the Dutch Golden Age from artists like Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Hals. Housed in an 1827 building, the Rijksmuseum has been under renovation since 2003 and next year will see its reopening with a design by Spanish architects Cruz y Ortiz. Yesterday, Rijksmuseum introduced their new logo and identity, designed by Irma Boom with custom lettering by Paul van der Laan of Bold Monday, replacing the 32-year-old logo designed by Studio Dumbar.
Irma Boom: “My starting point was the fact that the Rijksmuseum is a national museum with international appeal. The design is clear and powerful and anchors the museum in the present.”
In addition to the new logo, the new Rijksmuseum house style incorporates a newly designed typeface and colour palette. The new typeface, named de Rijksmuseum, was specially developed for the Rijksmuseum by typographic designer Paul van der Laan of the Bold Monday font foundry. The colour palette, the DNA of the Rijksmuseum, is based on the highlights of the collection and is used in a variety of different visual manifestations.Press Release
I love me some vintage Dumbar but that old logo was like trying to mate a reptile with an amphibian with a piece of fruit. You could hang one Rembrandt between each of the characters in “a m s t e r d a m”. The new logo is a vast typographic improvement, placing emphasis on the “IJ” digraph — not a ligature as I called it in the catastrophe that was the other recent Dutch museum redesign for the Stedelijk. It adds, in a handsome way, a subtle touch of idiosyncrasy to an otherwise serious sans serif. There is really not much more else to say on the matter. It’s a fine design. But nothing more. In application the logo doesn’t exert any effort; it just sits there. Which, again, is a fine thing to do. But nothing more. This being a more traditional fine arts museum, the logo and application feels appropriate and perhaps it will be the catalogs and other printed collateral where Boom’s usual boom comes into play but for now, what you see is what you get.