University of the Arts Helsinki – branding

Bold award winning identity that doesn’t play it safe

At the beginning of 2013 three of Finland’s most prestigious art academies, the Academy of Fine Arts, the Sibelius Academy and the Theatre Academy, merged into one university called The University of the Arts Helsinki. Bond’s challenge was to create brand architecture and a unified brand identity that also leaves room for the individual academies to build their own profiles. The solution is an identity that works across the different arts and avoids the typical clichés and conventions. The identity doesn’t play it safe. The deconstructed logotypes distinguish the university from business and science universities. The simple and bold anchor symbol ‘X’ has plenty of meanings, just like art does. The symbol can be seen, for example, as a starting point, a destination, a meeting place, a location, a signature, an unknown force, a warning, an irritant, a question and a solution. This holistic project covered all brand touch points.



  • Type Directors Club Communication Design, Winner, 2014
  • Best of Finnish Advertising and Design, Gold Award, 2014
  • Best in European Design & Advertising ADCE, Silver Award, 2014
  • Rebrand 100. Global Award, 2014
  • Cannes Lions, Shortlist, 2014