National Book Foundation
We’ve worked with the National Book Foundation since 2016. First, to redesign their graphic identity ahead of the 2016 National Book Awards, then to design the awards materials themselves. In 2017, we revisited the awards materials and reimagined some of the way these items are produced.
Historically, the program printed for the the Awards—with award recipient bios, finalist information, and a re-cap of the Foundation’s year of programming—has been used for just one night. This seemed an incredible waste of paper and resources! The program we designed this year features a removable, National Book Awards-specific “dust jacket” with welcome letters from Chairman of the Board David Steinberger and Executive Director Lisa Lucas. This jacket is designed in the spirit of the books this awards ceremony celebrates—their headshots appear on the flaps. More important than making a cheeky book joke, though, is that this removable jacket allows for these publications to be useful for the Foundation year-round.
We began our work in 2016 by redrawing the book icon, the most recognizable component of the National Book Foundation’s identity, but flipped the hierarchy to emphasize the type. We refer to this new lockup as “The Prefix” because it rarely, if ever, lives on its own. It’s the starting point for the logos of the Foundation as well as the Awards and many other initiatives sponsored by the Foundation.
The National Book Foundation presents the National Book Awards, but the Awards are a much more visible entity. In an attempt to increase awareness of the Foundation itself, the two primary logos stand on equal visual footing; the tagline paired with each defines its relationship to the other.
The book icon always follows the words “National Book”. In titling, the icon picks up whatever accent color is used for the name of the entity, program or initiative it accompanies.
After the initial identity project, we designed the invitation, program, and event signage for the 67th National Book Awards. The graphic look for that year’s event—stark: red, gold and black—served to boldly introduce the new identity.