4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art fosters excellence and innovation in contemporary Asian and Australian culture through research, documentation, development, discussion and presentation of contemporary visual art. With the appointment of a new director and their upcoming 20th anniversary, 4A came to us with the challenge of reinvigorating their brand for the next chapter in their journey.
Being at the intersection of a variety of cultures, 4A’s role in many ways is one of an interpreter, provoking conversations across cultures and languages. Contemporary art, however, isn’t meant to answer questions – its task is to provoke more questions and challenge audiences. With this in mind, our approach was to have audiences feel challenged, asking more questions than they did prior to visiting 4A. The brand takes descriptions of artists’ work and translates them through various regional languages. Each translation creates a slight shift in the original meaning of the work, adding new and challenging ideas of what the work means to the various audiences that view it. To accompany this translation strip a dynamic logo has been designed that changes its internal design based on the works it is promoting.
We pass text through Google Translate, transitioning from one language directly into another. Repeating this process creates different interpretations and quirky translations of the same subject matter meaning the conversation is always surprising and challenges you to reconsider what you’ve seen and heard.