Tuesday, November 27, 2012
New logo: Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf is the capital and second largest city in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, and the seventh largest city in all of Germany. Yesterday, Düsseldorf's mayor presented the above mark that will be used to market and represent the city. Reports say it will be supplementary and that existing city logos will remain in use.
The new symbol is recognised around the world as a happy emoticon, that is produced a colon and the letter D. That letter also happens to be the first letter in Düsseldorf. It was created by BBDO who were selected out of 66 agencies, five of which where allowed to put forth proposals to the mayor.
Update December 2: For more on this project I'd recommend Design Tagebuch, where you'll find much more information (in German) and plenty of images.
Many commenters mentioned a Croatian company called Lega-Lega that have developed a similar marque for Dubrovnik. T-shirts or coasters with the smiling Dubrovnik D can be bought in their web store.
I have also been alerted on a logo for Denmark that Jacob Trollbäck and Paul Schlacter of Trollbäck+Company in New York developed for a 2007 issue of Conde Nast Traveller where designers were asked to rebrand a nation of their choice.
It should be stressed that both these logos appear to be created for the fun of it are not commissioned from the clients in question. Accusations of plagiarism are obviously baseless. This is a fairly simple idea, simply executed, using an emoticon known around the world. Future designers may well come up with the same idea without ever seeing any of the three smiling D:s above, and it is likely that neither of their designers where the first to come up with the idea. I also suspect that the designers behind the Dubrovnik and Denmark D:s are well aware of this and are not feeling litigious.