A publicly funded library system serving the city of Saskatoon, Canada, and its surrounding communities. Through its eight local branches, it provides a variety of materials, programming, and services to approximately 222,000 residents of all ages and ethnicities (2011 census).
Saskatoon Public Library (SPL) needed help to increase branch usage and circulation of its materials. Our team was involved in an extensive research process, determining that a new visual identity—especially a new logo—was needed to bring life to SPL’s brand. It was important to design a logo that would escort SPL into the future of information sharing. However, technology is changing so rapidly that it’s impossible to predict what information will look like in 50 years. The new look also needed to respect the history of libraries in general, as well as their position as a gathering place, a destination, and a knowledge centre.
The logo’s primary symbols are books, with three sizes representing different reading levels, as well as the diversity of library-goers. The books are abstracted to become pieces of a larger shape, a sunburst. The book spines point inward, like arrows, and the spaces become pathways. Both elements lead to the centre circle, which is representational of a gathering place and knowledge centre. The typeface used, Ubuntu, is an open source typeface which is ideal for SPL as a public institution. It’s a font that breaks down barriers, unifying people and language, an example of what we envision the future of the Saskatoon Public Library.