The Library is unveiling an updated logo and tagline, along with its extensive line-up of fall activities—ranging from world-class author talks, fun and creative ways to celebrate your freedom to read during Banned Books Week, and thought-provoking Hispanic Heritage Month programs.
The updated logo retains the familiar book graphic, as reading and information remain central to the Library’s mission. The addition of a bold “X” emphasizes the position of the Library as the public commons, an educational and cultural destination for tens of thousands of Arlington residents and Library patrons.
“Contemporary public libraries are more than just books. They are meeting spaces, business incubators, places of refuge. They are inclusive and they enhance the quality of community life. ‘X’ marks the spot is a reminder of the Library’s role as both a community builder and a beloved gathering place,” says Library Director Diane Kresh.
The visual identity was developed in-house by the Library’s communications team and integrates prior strategic planning and engagement efforts. The new tagline—Everyone Has A Story—highlights our commitment to inclusion and diverse points of view. “We are always looking for new ways to meet the needs of our growing community,” says Kresh. “The tagline mirrors our promise to be a wellspring of ideas and community conversation.”
Arlington Public Library will use the tagline in its outreach and messaging and in conjunction with the it’s long-standing, community oral history program.
Ron Trueworthy says
X-ing out books (my first thought about the new logo) doesn’t support the value of our shared community library. It reminds me of the desire of many to cut out items from always competitive budgets. I can just hear folks saying “Yeah, who reads paper books anymore; let’s spend that money where it’s really needed.”
Marjorie Varner says
Fabulous update. Love the reasoning, the connected “story” for the design.
Wendie White says
I’m not crazy about the new logo: the X looks more like a cross, it’s hard to see a book in the graphic, and I’m not sure what the pink portion in the top right symbolizes. It’s a little too abstract for my taste and doesn’t seem to graphically capture what you were going for.
I like the tag line. But I don’t see the X. I see a cross. In fact, it looks like my mothers church’s logo. http://www.carlislebaptist.com/
A. Ercolano says
This is a wildly bad logo. If you’re trying to make this look like a location marker, why not use the pin drop visual from all the map apps that are around? As others have commented, an X anywhere near a library logo looks like you are banning, excluding, eliminating, etc. Marketing 101: if it requires 3 full paragraphs of explanation, it’s probably not a good visual brand. But it would serve as an excellent case study for a library marketing class on what NOT to do.
Confusing. An angled cross is all I see. I guess you do lend the Bible. Harsh colors. I hope no design firm was paid for this meh idea. Put money into a music collection instead.
I’m not sure that an sends the message you are promoting. It looks more like it is signaling the end of books Yes, X marks the spot, but it also means deletion.
Martha Logan says
I applaud your tagline, but I think the logo is confusing. At first I thought the book was being X’d out, before reading that in this case “X marks the spot.” Also unattractive — the color choices and combination of them.
Jenia R says
This is nice. I like the colours. I would just make the book look more like a book. I couldn’t see the back cover until I got up close. Will you have bookmarks to hand out?
Jean Arnold says
I see nothing in this design that immediately identifies my public library. I first relate to a white cross that connotes “medical”. Hope this was not costly as some logos can be.
I think the tag line is great. Libraries may be more than books, but that’s the classic identifier, isn’t it? “Classic” is integral to an effective, long-lived logo.
Dean Schuman says
What was wrong with the old logo? This new color scheme doesn’t match well. I feel bad saying this… but I also didn’t like the new logo in the catalog. Looked awful with the orange and blue. I know there must’ve been a lot work into this but did you get a focus group? I have participated in previous ones.
I like the sentiments, but I think they’re lost in translation. After reading the explanation I understand that the logo base is a book, but my thought prior was that it’s a screen. The “x” is a bit too abstract and, as executed, conveys more of a negative, exclusionary connotation, rather than inclusion and community-building. Personally, I like the color scheme. However, I think the pink triangle is causing some of the confusion about whether the symbol is an “x” or a cross – it causes the eye to see the symbol as on an angle rather then vertically. Absolute applaud the effort, but I’m wondering if you tested this with the public before rolling out?
The new logo totally misses the mark. It either looks like a banned book (i.e., a book that’s been x’d out), or a cross. For a community which prides itself on openness and diversity, an “X” or a cross seems negative and hostile.
The pink and green color scheme is totally different than all other Arlington County sites, and is not friendly to folks with color blindness. For example, having text in fuchsia on a black background (as occurs on the bottom of this page), is virtually unreadable to the 4-5% of the population with color blindness, as the text shows up as dark blue on a black background.
My preference would be to scrap this failed rebranding and instead hold a contest for the community to submit new logo (and color scheme?) ideas. That seems to work great for the vehicle decals, and would get the community engaged and bought-in to the change.
I agree with this comment. I am color blind and am having issues with the website colors. I would have gladly participated in the public survey, if there was one. I would have liked a voting period like the county does for the car tags/permit stickers. That seems to bring the community together (your intent) and is fair.
Unlike the old logo, the new logo is confusing and the bright pink hurts my eyes. Sorry to those who worked on it but I think you should go back to the drawing board.
Michael Thomas says
What was wrong with the old logo? At a time when the library budget is constantly under threat, expending resources to change a perfectly good logo is poor stewardship. Worse, the new logo seems to symbolize “crossing out” books.
Elena Rodriguez says
Terrible execution. The colors are odd and the graphic doesn’t really look like a book. As mentioned by others, the X seems more like a cross and seems medical.
The excellent concepts of X marks the spot, crossroads and a book are completely lost here.
I love the tagline – perfect for Arlington and for libraries!
A bold X? It’s quite abstract. Frankly, I didn’t know it was an X. Didn’t know it was a book, either, probably because the X isn’t well defined by a border, so that pink triangle part is confusing. Colors are a bit jarring.
Cynthia Margeson says
Sorry, but I do not care for the new logo. As many have stated- the X seems to be crossing out a book. Didn’t recognize it as a book at first sight. Colors are modern, but the whole thing is not connected. to me does not represent Arlington or a library. That being said, I will continue to use the library as often as possible.
Melissa Sprott says
Love the tagline.
The logo doesn’t read “book” to me ( the shape is square-to-horizontal), the pink has no context, and the X seems negative. And, typographically, such a wide (square) X *does* look like a canted cross.
I applaud the effort to contain costs by designing in-house, but logo designers get paid for a reason.
And I honestly don’t know why we needed a new logo.
Leticia Davis says
An X says to me that something is not allowed, in this case a book? I don’t think that’s the message the wonderful Arlington Public Library wants to send. Also, I find the colors unappealing and unrelated to anything else about Arlington.
This is a really bizarre logo. I had to read that the green thing is supposed to be a book, but the white X is beyond comprehension. What does it have to do with reading? If anything it suggests the opposite–either books are bad or they should be banned. Were there any runner-up designs? I suspect any of them would be preferable to this one.