The International by Studio South, New Zealand5 August,2016
Opinion by Richard Baird.
The International is a new apartment complex, located not far from Auckland’s Albert Park, with 88 luxury residencies. The building, a repurposed former office, is currently being transformed into an iconic structure with a contemporary exoskeleton of elongated beams. To promote the building and help sell apartments off-plan, the graphic designers at Studio South worked with the developer behind The International to create a holistic brand identity and marketing package.
Alongside a variety of printed assets, which included brochures, stationery, business cards, event invitations and floorplans, Studio South were also involved in the spatial design of an apartment showroom, informed by the earthy tones of Rufus Knight’s interior design and taking their cues from luxury brands. This post features some extensive specification insight so be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the article.
Studio South delivered a brand identity that aligns itself with the high-end minimalism of luxury brands; well-suited to a target market of high-wealth, premium buyers, whilst also working in an strong architectural and property development component. This comes through in the use of simple, strong, vertical forms, an abundance of space, grid-based layouts and the perceived value of tactile material choices and print finishes.
The logo’s slim shape and the logotype’s tall structural qualities, appearing to draw on the unique exoskeleton of the building, is sophisticated in its restraint yet memorable in its use. Studio South have managed to get quite a lot of visual equity from a very simple mark. Its diversity and creativity of use gives the generic quality of its form distinction. There are some neat ideas. These include the logo drawn out through the threading of ribbon across the invitations, the clock faces, elongated iconography and the labelling of event wine bottles.
As you would expect from a contemporary and luxury apartment complex, a minimal graphic expression is paired with a sense of materiality in the choice of boards, fabrics and print finishes. It is great to see a graphic design studio exercise its interior design abilities, and develop a continuity between the dressing of physical space and brand identity assets. The balance between geometric exterior structure and high quality finishes of its interior design are reflected throughout Studio South’s brand identity work. Highlights include the embossed fabric sleeves and covers of the brochures, and the strong linear cut qualities of natural materials.
Brochure layouts are simple and spacious, with a strong grid-based layout and a good tension between image and text. There is not anything particularly challenging in these, however, property is easily read as contemporary. A full bleed metallic copper ink functions to break up sections with a luxury quality, while the use of orientation subtly links back to the tall and slender forms of logo and logotype. More from Studio South on BP&O.
The sales brochure features a matte silver foil over Arjowiggins Keaykolour Recycled Hazel & Camel at 300gsm. Inside is a 150gsm Sappi Tauro Offset paper with PMS 877U, hazel/camel spot colour and CMYK inks.
The 16pp introductory brochure cover has a matte silver foil applied to Arjowiggins Keaykolour 300gsm Recycled Hazel, and like the sales brochure features a Sappi Tauro Offset 150gsm paper with PMS 877U, hazel/camel spot colour and CMYK inks. The brochure case is constructed from debossed 2.5mm board wrapped in Brillianta 4192, which is matched to Keaykolour Camel.
The folder is made from Arjowiggins’ 300gsm Keaykolour Recycled Hazel and has a matte silver foil and PMS 877U spot colour applied to it. The letterhead features PMS 877U over 120gsm Sappi Tauro Offset paper while the business card use a 190gsm duplex Sappi Tauro Offset with a matte silver foil print finish and PMS 877U spot colour.
The invite cover has a silver silk ribbon running through 270gsm Colourplan Ebony Black from G.F Smith and the interior is 150gsm Sappi Tauro Offset with a black ink.
The display boxes feature a debossed 2.5mm board wrapped in 135gsm Colourplan Ebony Black from G.F Smith, while the A3 sales book has a similar debossed 2.5mm board cover but is wrapped in Brillianta 4192, (matched to Keaykolour Camel). The inside sheets are 170gsm matte laminated Sappi Tauro Offset and printed digital offset.
What do you think of Studio South’s brand identity work for The International? Share your thoughts in the comment section below or get the conversation started on Twitter.
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