The first recurring element we noticed in NASA’s previous logos was that perennial truth: what looks futurist today looks passé tomorrow. Take the “meatball” logo. In our eyes, it comes from a former era: the cold war. Another thing is that tomorrow comes faster today than it did yesterday. We wanted to account for this.
From the start, we wanted to find something that didn’t require explanation. Something that, on a basic and universal level was about what NASA is and does.
Our home has become bigger than just the earth. Space is no longer there, it’s here. We also like the fact that “THERE” contains the entire journey in a single word.
Of course NASA is an American agency, but we wanted to downplay its nationalist side and sidestep the flag-planting mentality. So, the “US” in the tagline isn’t “U.S.” It’s all of us. Everyone on earth.
A lot of NASA images are excessively tied to the idea of American power. We wanted to get back to the idea of NASA taking giant steps for mankind. We’re all along for the ride.
Our project was covered far and wide by the press, like here or here, and was highly controversial. You can’t touch such a logo without inciting emotional reactions. By in large, the design community was extremely positive about our proposal, whereas the masses were vehemently less so. Either way, it is the responsibility of design companies to open such debates; to always reconsider whether a brand’s identity is in line with its position in the world today.
Amazingly, our proposal for NASA’s rebrand created such buzz that some began to believe it was the real NASA logo. The reaction provoked us to send our proposal to NASA. They turned it down.