Pol Solsona Studio’s dynamic identity for music festival Embassa’t pushes the QR code to its limit
After the closing of ‘la Zona Hermètica’ in 2009, the music festival Embassa’t was born to fill Sabadell’s musical and cultural void. Held annually in the Catalonian city, in recent years the three-day event has become an essential meeting point for lovers of pop-rock, urban and electronic music. Embassa’t invited Pol Solsona Studio to create their look for 2022. In response, the Barcelona-based Creative Director and his team developed an identity built around the concept of ‘human adaptation.’
At the centre sits the trusty QR code. “The main goal of the identity is to give a renewed and fresh vision to shapes that are familiar to most people,” Solsona tells us. Much like how society adapted to the unprecedented landscape of COVID, the identity’s key element adapts to any possible format or platform. A symbol we’re no doubt all familiar with, the visual elements of the QR codes inspired the team to distort them to their limits, while still making them recognisable to cameras. In some of the physical adaptations, the Creative Director points out, the QR has a functional and strategic purpose. “It also redirects to the festival sales page or other necessary communication purposes that were changing throughout the festival campaign,” he adds. By deconstructing the code and experimenting with the forms, Solsona also built a series of patterns as well as a selection of animations for digital outputs.
As the influence of the QR code extends to the rest of the visual language, it made sense for the studio to maintain a black-and-white palette, instead of modifying the code's traditional colours. “We wanted to distort only the essence of the code, in other words, the shape,” he explains. “In this way, we managed to make the code more recognisable, and at the same time, we bring elegance and strength to the overall.”
In contrast to the dynamism of the rest of the identity, Solsona kept the typography low-key. “We used Arial in two weights, Regular and Bold,” he recalls. “The idea was to use a ‘mainstream’ and ‘familiar’ font and not to give prominence to the typography itself, since we wanted to play with ordinary elements,” he concludes.