The Forum Building

The University of Exeter


Brand Identity | Typeface | Wayfinding & Signage | Digital Pattern Innovation

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The Forum is The University of Exeter’s stunning £48 million centerpiece designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects. As brand identity, and signage and wayfinding designers we responsed to the fantastic architectural offer with a complimentary and refined system for the new student focused destination.

The identity is inspired by the building’s architecture and aspects of the University’s existing brand. In collaboration with Gennaro Senatore, a research engineer (University College London) and designer (Expedition Engineering) specialized in computational methods, we created an intricate brand expression pattern through programming an algorithm to mimic natural forms found in the University’s gardens and arboretum.

Influences of the pattern appear within the bespoke display typeface and icon set. The chosen building identity’s colour palette compliments it’s architectural materials– a vivid blue, green to purple spectrum grounded by a deep black copper. A set of distinctive sub-brands represents each one of the five destinations within the Forum, defined through colour, and graphic language.

The wayfinding signage has a strong and elegant style that compliments the architecture, and enables smooth navigation through the building’s complex series of mezzanine levels connecting new and existing spaces.

The Forum was opened by Her Majesty The Queen, revealing an engraved Bronze metal antiqued plaque. The building is now in constant use by the students and is a great success for the University.

Environmental graphics suppliers: Displayways
Pattern design collaboration: Gennaro Senatore
Signage contractors: Wood and Wood signs
Type design collaboration: Neal Fletcher