IN RESPONSE to August 2011’s looting and vandalism, the city council quickly commissioned the ‘I love MCR’ campaign aimed at re-uniting the city and promoting its strengths.
The campaign is still highly visible.
First seen in the Seventies by renowned designer Milton Glazer, the I LOVE NY campaign was groundbreaking and duly recycled, reinterpreted and re-hashed around the globe. It has some impact. And still does. The I LOVE MCR iconography underlines that.
Creative Lynx believes the fact that Manchester has adopted the I LOVE NY campaign and continues to use it in various incarnations is lazy
But why did we have to steal the New York idea?
Manchester graphic design company Creative Lynx believes it was wrong to do so. They think it was lazy.
Manchester, they say, 'is a city of firsts, steeped in culture and creativity with a significant graphic design legacy and its achievements are backed by a maverick confidence like no other'.
They thought they could do better.
I Love Mcr PosterFor them the current 'identifier' serves only as a reminder of a missed opportunity to show the world what Manchester is all about, in otherwords visionary and creatively astute. Apparently the I LOVE MCR icon lacks the ambition and confidence to do something new.
So Creative Lynx teamed up with students at The Manchester School of Art, at Manchester Metropolitan University. They wanted to start a 'conversation' about the identity of Manchester as a whole with the intention of engaging both the design industry and the public to create something more representative of the city.
The next stage is to open up the forum on a more formal level at the Manchester Design Symposium on Wednesday 21 March.
Confidential thinks this: Despite being trite, the immediacy of the I LOVE MCR did have instant appeal to people in the region. So two questions. Are Creative Lynx being too precious about 'design'? And would a more distinctive and 'more Manchester' campaign have worked better?
But still it's interesting to look through these designs below, and pick your own favourite.
The brief for the students
Re-imagine the identity in a way that encapsulates what Manchester is about. No Hearts. No clichés. Create an expression of Manchester that puts the people of Manchester at the core of it, but will be seen by the rest of the world. This is not an inward investment campaign nor is it a tourism drive.
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