Narrate’s sculptural identity for Three Forms Gallery explores subtlety and negative space
Uniquely residing primarily online with occasional pop-up shows, Three Forms Gallery is conceptually inspired by and takes its brand alias from Barbara Hepworth’s sculpture of the same name. Calling on London-based design studio Narrate, the gallery wanted an identity that represented the iconic artist’s monochromatic exploration of shape and space.
With this spirit in mind, Narrate’s identity for Three Forms Gallery is really the result of process; relying on a comprehensive but elementary visual system of flexible grids, with endless potential arrangements of text and image always traversed by three asymmetrical forms for the logotype. “The identity has been designed so that the grid lines and logo can move, allowing for alternative layouts,” Narrate’s Creative Director Rachel Long-Smith tells us, further explaining that “this flexibility is essential when designing for other exhibitions.”
In doing so, Narrate’s flexible identity design allows for specific creative choices, such as colour and layout, to be circumstantial to the exhibition at hand – a relationship that Narrate will continue to maintain with the gallery – all working under the consistency of the grid and Sharp Grotesk.
The use of Sharp Grotesk for the logotype is an intelligent typographic decision; utilising the innate personality of the typeface that comes from its modernist and modest Swiss aesthetic contrasted with its elegantly idiosyncratic construction – quietly paired with the supporting typeface Manege. The utter enormity of the Sharp Grotesk family also provides the typographic flexibility needed to compliment the fluidity of the grids. In an increasingly busy and maximalist world, the pairing together of these decisions creates a gentle but incredibly considered identity that isn’t afraid of negative space; finding strength is subtlety and simplicity.