E(art)H Chicago Naming, Branding, Collateral

Visualizing Climate Justice, Community, and Chicago

The Illinois Science & Energy Innovation Foundation and its partners approach us with this project in its beginning stages: they needed a name for an arts, community, climate, action project happening throughout Chicago in 12–14 neighborhoods. The project gathered about a dozen artists and arts organizations, community members, and climate groups to develop public art about how climate change impacts local communities. The art installations’ locations varied from the Loop to South Chicago to Albany Park, through vastly different demographics. This initiative was a cross-agency collaboration with PR, video, marketing, media buying, signage, and event marketing.


The project began with community research into needs and thoughts about climate and community, and we used that insight to name the project E(art)H Chicago. The name combines the three major themes: Earth, Art, and Chicago. The name demonstrates the integration of art, community, and climate justice for this project happening throughout the city and also lends itself to some visually interesting graphics. We also developed the messaging and messaging framework for future advertising and promotion.


We had a lot of themes to cover in this branding: from climate, to community representation, to Chicago, to neighborhood-specific, and exciting for the public. We created a system with many options for color, graphics, and layouts but limited typographic options to keep some consistency. We used bright jewel tones to reflect the City’s branding and flag and work well with Park District and DCASE branding. We also developed the visual look and main messaging, with knowledge of diverse communities’ backgrounds throughout Chicago neighborhoods. We always show branding in context, so before the tagline was finalized, we created comps showing how the design system could work on billboards, buses, and other OOH advertising.

Website Immersive

We developed a mobile-ready website and suggested QR code-enabled signage in partnership with the Chicago Park District to direct people visiting the installations with info about the artist(s) and project.

Out-of-Home Advertising

We designed a series of OOH advertising in partnership with DCASE, with many variations meant to last several weeks and remain fresh throughout the duration.

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