No logo but a leitmotif

new identity the National Maritime Museum

Two new presentations on masterpieces and cartography position the National Maritime Museum as an international institute of maritime knowledge. Design agency thonik translated the museum’s re-profiling into a new house style and campaign. These are clear, of minimalist elegance and appeal to families, culture buffs, foreign tourists and business partners alike. 


The roof of the monumental courtyard’s metal frame is based on compass lines from old nautical charts and the former constituted the starting point for thonik’s design. In still and moving images, this linear pattern is a leitmotif. It’s combined with different shades of blue, in line with museum’s new motto: ‘water connects worlds’.


The bilingual name also expresses the new positioning: het scheepvaart / national maritime / museum. It’s not a logo but rather a purely typographic integration of the museum’s identity, history and ambitions. Akkurat, the font used, strikes a perfect balance between novelty and professionalism. All communication is executed in the same font, which is typical of the thonik approach that led to the agency’s ‘the new sobriety’ sobriquet as early as 1994.

The new visual identity has been applied to the full range of online and offline communication: from routing, banners and menus to publications, merchandise and animations. The website was developed in cooperation with Momkai. Moreover, thonik developed the posters, flyers and tram visuals for the campaign promoting the National Maritime Museum’s new course.

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