Palazzo dei Diamanti
Visual communication about cultural events in a place of historical and architectural interest.
The Fondazione Ferrara Arte (in collaboration with the Gallerie d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, and the Settore Attività Culturali of Ferrara’s city council) organises international events and exhibitions which aim to promote Ferrara’s rich historical and artistic heritage.
Historical buildings naturally offer themselves as symbols of the visual identity of a town, because of their physical presence, and the heritage they represent.
Our challenge was to separate, in the public’s mind, the cultural events hosted by Ferrara from their physical venues. This was achieved by transforming the brand identity of the Palazzo dei Diamanti, and presenting the Palazzo as a repository and promoter of cultural events.
We redesigned representations of the Palazzo dei Diamanti’s name, placing forward slashes between the three words that comprise it. These slashes enhanced the name’s visual impact and evoked the diagonal details of the Palazzo’s architecture. The slash is an iconic and phonetically soundless symbol, belonging to punctuation rather than the alphabet. Highly adaptable and mobile, the slash suggests a cultural offering which is dynamic and responsive to the public. These characteristics also allow for its flexible use in the Fondazione’s communication material.
Next, we designed two key elements of the Palazzo’s visual identity: the fonts and the colour palette. We also established the visual identity guidelines and provided advice on how to apply the visual identity theme to exhibition catalogues. In addition, we designed the Palazzo’s website, and analyzed its editorial content.
We also organised training courses for the staff of the Fondazione Ferrara Arte focusing on the use of elements of the visual identity in the Palazzo’s communication material. These courses enabled the staff to conduct communication activities independently. We also provide ongoing support and creative direction on the graphic aspects used in communication material.
In 2016, we promoted the exhibition “Orlando Furioso 500 years”. We made six short videos in which the world of Orlando comes to life, through the animation of six artworks, accompanied by a dramatic soundtrack. We thought of these videos as scenes Ariosto might have glimpsed in his dreams.
Gathering together masterpieces from museums all over the world, the exhibition “Orlando Furioso 500 years” included large-scale paintings, tapestries, weapons, maps, and valuable books from different historical periods. The Palazzo dei Diamanti was transformed into a vast cabinet of curiosities in which diverse items coexisted side-by-side, with Orlando providing the leitmotif. The exhibition demonstrated the powerful influence of the poem “Orlando Furioso” on the imagination of countless artists down the centuries. It also foregrounded the atmosphere of discovery and adventure communicated so forcefully by the poem.