Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism.
Global coffee retailer Starbucks is turning 40 this year and they’ve announced a new logo to coincide with the occasion. Looking at the sweep of logos from the original topless two-tailed mermaid — though the company often calls it a siren — that appeared on cups at their first store in Seattle’s Pike Place Market to the more modern version, I can’t help but notice the march towards abstraction and a less coffee-centric brand. Gone is the word “coffee” and the color brown, and in its place is an almost Holiday Inn-like green blandness that zooms in even closer on the increasingly de-nuded mermaid.
What this redesign suggests is that Starbucks will continue to look beyond coffee and go more downmarket as it continues to grow. Hip 1990s Seattle sensibilities have given way to a more generic style common with fast-food chains you’d find in a shopping mall food court. What I think is ballsy about the design is that it could easily be read by Islamophobes as, well, Islamic with its titled crescent form and star, but then again it’s not like US President Barack Obama is associated with Starbucks, so the wingnuts haven’t gone after this … yet.
Logo styles are impacted by trends but this redesign seems to go against those spotted by Logo Lounge last month, namely it doesn’t display any cubist tendencies or spores, ghosts, tendrils, shifts, parts, pixels, hexadrons, dust, stains, bursts or even a wallpaper or boxed-up quality (to name a few), hell it doesn’t even suggest any of the minor trends of melting, spirograms or extrusions. So, what does it communicate? The familiarity of the smiling mermaid face (not in the 1971 original) and an image dominated (overwhelmed?) by stripes. I wonder if the library lounge feel of current Starbucks joints will soon give way to more staid plastic pivoting furniture. Judging by the logo, that’s the direction its headed.
The University of Virginia researchers wrote that the data “provides compelling evidence that these symbols are associated with hate.”
We are waiting for spectacle and when the quotidian, yet incongruous actions occur I wonder whether there is any real payoff coming.
Hear from Holly Jean Buck, Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas, Simon Denny, Elizabeth Hoover, Renee Kemp-Rotan, Joseph Kunkel, and more at this free public event.
Tanega’s approach to mark-making comes across as stream of consciousness, as if she’s engaged in a conversation with herself.
Starting Monday, readers can borrow one of 50 rare and out-of-print titles, mailed to them completely free of charge, from Saint Heron Library.
EFA Open Studios offers a portal into the creative habitats of over 65 artists working in Manhattan’s longest-running studio program, including Dannielle Tegeder, Wafaa Bilal, Cui Fei, and Anina Major.
This is Yuskavage’s great gift, turning upside down our settled ways of thinking and seeing and, with ease, transforming the vulgar and ridiculous into the sublime.
51 international publishers and galleries showcase their latest editions in prints and artists’ books at this free public fair, which is fully online this year.
While hardly about the pandemic, or any of the other crises so afflicting us, all are invoked in this exhibition, which is also often tender and profoundly soulful.
These glowing, dynamic artworks reproduce something of Bosch’s chaotic energy, but on an immersive, multi-sensory scale.
This week, addressing a transphobic comedy special on Netflix, the story behind KKK hoods, cultural identity fraud, an anti-Semitic take on modern art, and more.