By Anthony Furia RGD
There are good logos, there are great logos, and then there are “Holy flippin’ shizzle, what genius made that!?” logos. You know… the kind of work you wish you had made, that turns heads, raises the bar and reminds you why you became a designer. I love those kinds of logos, but they are few and far between; mostly because to pull them off requires a rare blend of exceptional talent, steely courage, strong leadership, mad communication skills and a whole whack of client trust. Luckily, the planets do occasionally align and we end up with beauties like these.
Here are Anthony Furia's top 5 logos he wishes he had designed...
UCLA Architecture & Urban Design - Eddie Opara, Pentagram
This identity for UCLA Architecture & Urban Design is one of my all time favourites and was my first introduction to Eddie and his brilliant work. Formally beautiful, striking, sensible, expressive and with an attitude I can’t quite put my finger on…. it’s just so damn good.
MIT Media Lab - Michael Bierut, Pentagram
Michael and his team at Pentagram have a ridiculously impressive body of work, but this one takes the cake for me. Seriously, could this visual language be any better suited to a technology institute? Clever, classy, unique, memorable and the space invaders vibe is just extra delicious. Truly superb!
London 2012 Olympics - Wolff Olins
The best thing to happen to Games branding since Lance Wyman, Wolff Olins knocked this one out of Olympic park and into the stratosphere. This logo is hands down a certified gosh darn masterpiece, and like all things that stray too far from the well trodden path, it was, and still is, despised and ridiculed.
The public reaction was so strong at the time it reminded me of a quote attributed to the great Oscar Wilde. When asked how the opening night of one of his plays went, Oscar quipped, “The play was a great success, but the audience was a total failure.”
For an event with such dull design expectations as the Olympic Games, I take my hat off to the team at Wolff Olins for their fearless approach in capturing the vibrancy and energy of one of humanity’s great global events. Bravo!
ITV – Matt Rudd, Rudd Studio
Whoever said logos should only have two colours was an incompetent buffoon. The colour palette for UK television broadcaster ITV is fresh and utterly fantastic; I mean c’mon… making olive green work in an identity deserves a bloody standing ovation! The cognac-smooth loopy rhythm and little pinched details of this mark are so charming they make me swoon. Can anyone imagine a North American broadcaster having the guts to be this dope?
The Met – Wolff Olins
Another controversial public backlash offering from Wolff Olins. This rebranding of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, though relatively recent, is probably my favourite word mark. When I first saw it I just stared at it, transfixed, dumbfounded… I wanted to unlock its mysteries, understand its grace. It’s a mark that, on first glance, feels like it shouldn’t work, but it does, and it does so beautifully. If I were a logo, I would ask this one out on a date.
There are of course, so many more logos I wish I had designed, but these five in particular remind me of design’s potential and inspire me to work harder. I also recognize that only two nations are represented on this list, England and America, which only serves to highlight the narrowness of my experience. I would love to hear from anyone who can point me to the amazing identity work being done outside the English speaking world -- Email Anthony Furia at