AIR Studios by Spin — BP&O
Statement by Richard Baird
AIR Studios was founded in 1965 by Beatles producer Sir George Martin. It is located in Lyndhurst Hall in London, a former church with one of the largest recording rooms in the world and a live room for a full symphony orchestra. Since its opening, it has hosted an abundance of world-class talent. These included Sir Paul McCartney, Adele, the Rolling Stones, Elton John and Lou Reed. It was also the studio where Oscar-winning scores such as Atonement and Grand Budapest Hotel were recorded. London-based design studio Spin was commissioned to develop a new graphic identity for the studio that pays homage to its rich heritage, the talent it attracts, and Air's future ambitions. This resulted in the creation of a dynamic symbol for orbits and wavy waves, a modern color palette of neutral and bright colors, black and white photography and the use of motion on the screen
The approach speaks a lot for Spin’s own design philosophy. It continues the spirit of the mid-century programs for brand production and corporate identity, which are composed of the shape, color, type and arrangement of information, and at the same time works on the joy of movement and the transitions that digital offers today.
Like sound, the name air has a spatial, yet invisible quality. This commonality develops into a visible formal language, which leads the mind in the context of a recording studio to a sound with spatial (and acoustic) volume, which starts from and circles around a central point, that of the sound artist. This also channels some of the spatial qualities of Air Studio's home in Lyndhurst Hall, which has a central 360 ° living space. The precision and lightness of the lines that make up the symbols go well with the clarity and delimitation of the frequencies achieved through good mastering.
Isolated and in its simplest form, the logo is an effective balance between fine and bold, large and small, detailed and reduced. The different proportionality between the symbol and the word mark gives it flexibility and usefulness, while the letter forms from Akzidenz Grotesk complement the compactness and immediacy of the name.
Although it is largely a graphics system with a central symbolic component, the possibilities for creating different symbols and for using movements on the screen are diverse. There is also a beauty to this as a collection. Everyone can be read in its abstract qualities as something, as an invitation to search for meaning, as forms with a vocabulary. A timeline or 0-line plane curved into a circle becomes a vortex into which waves can be drawn, flooded by them, or rotated in orbit. On a black surface it is difficult not to feel the feeling of a wide space, the stillness in which the sound moves. Of course there have been deviations from this in the past, but the range, movement, color and application of the idea appear distinctive and interesting.
The use of bright colors on the Internet in addition to black and white images on the history page gives the identity a wider range, a feeling for the past and the present, immediacy and subtlety, joy and functionality. This is promoted in print using neons and neutrals. As a logo-centric system, where the forms run across badges, small and large stickers, umbrellas and uniforms and are printed on business cards and test prints, it links everything coherently and quickly with a sufficient potential form language to keep it interesting and thoughtful. Other works by Spin on BP & O.
Design: spin. Opinion: Richard Baird. Fonts: Akzidenz Grotesk.
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