A contemporary identity for classical orchestra



branding

identity system

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The Atlanta University Center-wide Symphony Orchestra (AUCSO) is a singular space for music learning, rehearsal, and performance, serving the historically Black colleges and universities of the Atlanta University Center Consortium (AUCC).

AUCSO challenges perceptions that classical music is racialized, esoteric, and belongs to the past. Through educational and public programming, AUCSO presents classical music through the lens of Black history, and it explores musical innovation in orchestra today. It invites AUCC students and Black Atlantans to see themselves as musicians, patrons, and collaborators—as the future of classical.

AUCSO was in need of a strong brand identity that would stand out across multiple campuses, give visual cohesion to its programs, and express its diverse and lively vision for orchestra.


  





imagining orchestra tomorrow


Nesting varied graphic styles, the logo is an organic, multifaceted mark that reflects AUCSO’s cultural identity, innovation, and community.

The thin, exuberant lines are inspired by musical notation, alluding to discipline and performance. The brushed arch evokes the stage and the humanity of music. The four dots stand for the four HBCUs that the AUCSO serves, as well as the intellectual growth and community that they represent. Structured as a spiral, the logo optically reaches back and pushes forward—just as the orchestra is invested in both the past and the future.

As a whole, the mark represents the many efforts and collaborations that come together under AUCSO.

AUCSO subverts expectations to make space for a versatile and vibrant vision of orchestra.








As a part of academic institutions and an arts organization, we balance an intellectually engaging vibe with simplicity and friendliness.
accessibility

Cultivating connections affirms its limitless possibilities. cultivates connections with classical music at every level, from appreciation, to in-depth learning, to professional pursuits in the field.











On the interior, bold wallpapers create urbanity, movement, and depth in the lobby, lower-level amenities, and short residential corridors.

















The nod to optical illusion continues in the corridors. wallpapers at each end have a distinctive colorway and extend graphically onto the flooring. Unit numbers are integrated into the corridors’ lighting. The typeface Bron, by Jeremia Adatte, plays on impossible geometry.