Hasselblad Foundation

Hasselblad Foundation

The story behind

The Hasselblad Foundation promotes research in the field of photography and natural sciences. They produce exhibits and grants the prestigious Hasselblad Award. We were asked to make a logo that could represent everything they do. We started with the obvious — an ‘H’. Its symmetry is seductive, but also problematic, as its dynamic potential is weak. We made over 200 sketches of it. The only solution we could find motive in was the one that reflects the small crosses in the reseau plate present in the Hasselblad camera. Intellectually it worked on all levels, but it gave a soulless impression. Giving up on the shape of the ‘H’ we looked elsewhere. As Victor Hasselblad loved to photograph birds, we took the idea of the bird, being free and curious, and turned it into a symbol. We put a lot of work into finding the right level of stylisation, as more naturalistic versions did not work well and interfered with photography.

The whole sketching process is featured in our book Process — Visual Journeys in Graphic Design.

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George Hoyningen-Huene
Pallas
Government of Sweden's Export Prize