Over the last few decades, our cities have been quickly transformed with the construction of large infrastructures that allow cars to circulate better: accesses, roundabouts, ring roads and tunnels, among others. Talking about urban mobility was, above all, giving priority to cars.
Fortunately, some things change for the better. And for years we wonder if there is another way to move. We have assumed that the public space of the city belongs to everyone, that it should be less hostile and consider all the ways of moving, especially the most sustainable ones.
mNACTEC –Museu de la Ciència i de la Tècnica de Catalunya– contacted our agency to develop the visual identity for the congress «Som elèctrics!» («We are Electric!»). And how could it be otherwise, we accepted the challenge delighted. This is the story of how we carried out the project.
Health, technology and mobility are the axis of “Som elèctrics!”, the electric vehicle and sustainable mobility congress held at the Science and Technology Museum of Catalonia (mNACTEC), which brings together scientists, experts and companies committed to a more sustainable city model. The “Som elèctrics!” program has a series of talks open to the public, with the participation of brands like Renault, Nissan, Circutor and Circuit of Barcelona/Catalunya, among others, as well as an exhibition at mNACTEC about pollution, the environment and the evolution of electric vehicles from the first prototypes and models of cars, motorcycles and bicycles.
MNACTEC hires us to connect the “We are electric!” not only with the professional public — business people, scientists and other speakers and specialists — but also with the citizens, turning it into a space for dissemination and reflection on the electric vehicle in the city. Its dual scientific and recreational aspect, as well as its wide audience, makes it important to make the advertising campaign visible in the city and throughout the territory.
After having a meeting with mNACTEC, we establish the key concepts that serve as a communicative axis to work on the identity of the congress: revolution, environment, sustainability, renewable energies, mobility, transition / transformation, future and social consciousness.
No revolution has ever taken place without the people. And the one that will lead us to a more sustainable and environmentally committed model of life will be no different.
Based on this fundamental reality and on the key concepts agreed with the client, we propose to explore a line of work based on a tribute to the iconic work Liberty Guiding the People — which condenses revolutionary values — by the French painter Eugène Delacroix.
We decided to take a vindictive direction based on the allegorical work of Delacroix, and collaborating with the illustrator Joan Negrescolor to create a work that reproduces its recognizable composition, led by a female figure that symbolizes freedom raising a flag — in our case, a skate. This central figure is flanked by other characters: citizens who use sustainable means to get around (on foot, by bicycle, skate or public transport).
Joan Negrescolor (Barcelona, 1978) works mainly in the field of picturebooks, and collaborates with social movements and critical initiatives in Barcelona and elsewhere. His work has been recognized around the world and has won numerous awards, including the White Ravens List 2017 for his work A Cidade dos Animais (Orfeu Negro).
Continuing with the reference to the work of Delacroix and based on the famous motto of the French Revolution — “Liberté, egalité, fraternité” — we develop our own “Mobility, Sustainability, Responsibility!”. In this way we reinforce the revolutionary and social will of the congress, and we also make more evident the inspiration that underpins the whole campaign.
We apply this motto to advertising graphics with the stencil technique, which takes us back to the world of graffiti and contemporary artists like Banksy or Blek le Rat, creating the letters from templates and using spray paint. The technique and its resonances fit very well with the identity of the congress (popular, social and vindictive) and reinforce the manifest character of the motto. The stencil has been digitized and incorporated into the graphic with minimal tweaks.
For this «Som elèctrics!» we have looked for a recognizable discourse that helps mNACTEC to make visible its advertising campaign through large format signs, posters, programs, press and digital actions on social networks.
But above all, we have provided the organization with an identity that makes it easier for them to establish synergies between sponsoring companies, congress attendees, speakers and the professional and general public, through a unified and powerful image that highlights the importance of people as an agent of change.