From the guy that brought the amazing ‘minimalisation' of popular packaging, comes “Chinatown”, where popular (Western) brand marks were ‘translated’ into the form of Chinese logos through neon lighting.
Mehmet Gözetlik is a multidisciplinary designer, artist and the executive art director / Co-Founder of Antrepo. His most recent project shown here “pushes viewers to ask themselves what it means to see, hear, and become fully aware.”
What interests me with these Chinese logos is the balance of familiarity of colour and form, yet the confusion and illegibility in the characters associated with them. It has in its process, reduced each brand mark to it’s key elements, retaining only as much as is required to recognise it.
I think it would be the feeling you get if one day when you woke up, you were no longer able to read. Walking through somewhere like Times Square in New York would feel entirely alien – you would catch glimpses of shapes and colours that feel familiar, yet, have no idea what was being advertised. A simpler analogy would be to walk through downtown Tokyo, but critically, the brand names would be in English so you would still recognise the company presented.
In their own right, each has a real beauty as artistic pieces. Just look at the transition of the Starbucks mermaid into neon lighting. The presentation of the vibrant colours against the dark backdrop really emphasises the curves and lines in each design.
Simplicity is an important part of great logo design, and what this project highlights is that an adaptable logo is a valuable design asset. I’m not sure how, for example, how an intricate, complex logo would carry over into a project like this.
The short video below is definitely worth watching to see just how the project was completed.