Design Firm
Identity Redesign
LogoLounge 5
A fashion-forward client needs an identity with long legs, as well as an
eternally youthful body that can be dressed and redressed, season after
season, and always be in style.
Such was the case for Alias, an Italian firm famous for its innovative
approach to furniture design. Every year, the company produces an entirely
new line of furniture that must have an entirely new identity in order to be
marketed properly. But the company’s own core identity needs to remain
intact—recognizable and solid—all of the time.
“Changes occur rapidly for our client, according to fashion, production,
new stores, or the partner’s ideas. They need a common frame for the
company identity, but a very elastic, prompt response to outside infl u-
ences,” says Mario Trimarchi, principal of Fragile, the Milan-based design
rm that has worked with Alias since 1999 to keep its identity fresh and
relevant. “Every season we change something in the communication for
that year’s design.”
Alias’ products are highly designed, down to the smallest details: Uncon-
ventional use of commonplace material, such as polyester mesh and
extruded aluminum, has been carefully considered and crafted. Invention
is also in play: For instance, one chair is made of wood but has a core of
injected polyurethane, to reduce weight. Trimarchi says that the company’s
far-reaching aesthetic is a well-known company attribute. So all graphic
design work associated with the client must have that same panache.
Trimarchi designed the company’s logo—a straightforward word mark—in
1999. It is simple and solid. At fi rst glance, it might not seem to be an apt or
at least highly stylish graphical representation of the core organization. But
the art director had a very good reason for the basic nature of his design: If
he chooses, he can use the letters in the word “Alias” almost like television
screens through and around which he projects additional color, texture and/
or graphics. The screens stay the same shape, but they constantly reveal
new information about the client as it evolves and changes over time.
The water bottle is a commodity, but it is also
an archetype: It has proven to be long-lasting in
our lives.
The identity for Alias, created by Fragile (of Milan), is like a clear
container. Visual messaging of all sorts can be shown through,
inside, and around the container. This keeps the identity change-
able and fresh for the fashion-forward furniture manufacturer year
after year.
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