I love the Lawrence Public Library.  I check out many books each month and am appreciative of the service they provide.  As with many regular users, I am a paying member of the Friends of the Library group which provide financial support to the library.

That said, I was truly in a state of disbelief when I went to the library web site early this morning and saw their new logo.  My initial reaction was to look at the date to make sure it wasn’t April  1st.  I had a similar feeling when I saw the new Gap logo that was subsequently scrapped.  I just couldn’t believe that it was real.

The new logo which you can see on the library site and here, is a red square with a white circle in it.  In describing it, the library website states something I feel could be pulled from the satirical newspaper, The Onion:

It combines the enduring, classic shapes of a square and circle, representing the library as a strong community anchor.

Assuming they keep the logo, I imagine that people will accept it, and maybe eventually embrace it.  It is certainly striking.  But if you look around the library’s website, you will see that it doesn’t really fit.  All of the graphics generally have a hand drawn or cartoonish look.  If you are playing one-of-these-doesn’t-belong, it take less than a second for the eye to identify that the logo just doesn’t fit.

The font and layout of the library name is well done, and maybe the point is to draw attention to the logo, but to keep the focus on the institution itself.  As with most things, I can get over the logo and appreciate the institution and services, but I can’t shake the feeling that another logo might have been more appropriate.

Most of us like to think that Lawrence is a progressive town with an elevated appreciation for art.  And from that sensibility, I understand the desire to have a logo that doesn’t beat you over the head with “hey, we are about books”.  That said, I feel this logo is too vague and abstract.  I have a hard time believing it will connect well with the community.

Good or bad, what do you think of the new logo?

 

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