Project / Publika, Kuala Lumpur
Task / Logo & Visual Identity Design
Client / Sunrise Berhad
Year / 2010
In collaboration with labDNA, social architects
Publika Shopping Gallery is a retail mall-cum-creative hub, anchored by a unique concept called MAP (Making Art Public), an activity generator with two key spaces, the White Box (for exhibitions) and the Black Box (for theatre performances).
Originally built to house corporate offices and retail, labDNA was engaged to position Publika as a creative retail hub instead, which called for some major retrofitting. Our design team developed the logo and visual strategy for both Publika and MAP to reflect the intent and spirit of the new concept.
Logo & Typeface design
A unique typeface was specially designed for Publika. Its folded forms create a three-dimensional effect, but done so in an illogical manner—the forms do not follow a rational folding system.
The eccentricity of this typeface is deliberate because it is meant to capture Publika’s character as a place that is full of surprises and new discoveries, as well as its community’s fun, playful, and edgy personality.
Graphic elements and symbol
Aside from the typeface, we also introduced the ‘deconstructed type’ element and the folded ribbon, both of which were derived from the Publika typeface. The elements are used in the marketing collaterals for Publika.
A question mark symbol was created as a teaser for Publika's launch. Art is widely regarded as a vehicle for evoking reflection and contemplation, and Publika is a place that embodies this. It is a place where ideas can roam free, where both creativity and critical thinking find a home.
Publika's question mark symbol serves as a reminder to not only keep your mind open to new ideas, but to also evaluate them critically.
Publika as an art and culture hub
To bolster its image as a vibrant art and culture hub, labDNA commissioned many artists, sculptors, and installation artists to produce murals, public seating, etc. For the opening of Publika, artists painted or did an installation for each of the toilets, making each of them an attraction by itself. Artists were also invited to make a statement on repurposed electrical wire spools, which were then scattered around the public areas (photos below, top row, left and right).