JWT/Clive Wilkinson Architects
Christian Daniels (principal in charge), Jonathan Mark (design director)
Crush Creative (primary fabricator), Design Communications Ltd. (wayfinding maps)
Erik Laignel Photography, Christian Daniels/EGG Office
JWT, the international advertising firm formerly known as J. Walter Thompson, needed a comprehensive signage and graphics program for its recently renovated headquarters in midtown Manhattan. The most notable challenge was to create an easily navigable signage system for a space that takes up five floors and includes more than 100 public spaces. The system also needed to tie in seamlessly with the design of the new space, and to create unique identities for each floor and department.
EGG Office chose to forego content generated by the advertising firm for client campaigns. Instead, they created supergraphics and colorful wayfinding elements that graphically abstract concepts related to advertising, media, and popular culture.
Each floor utilizes a distinctive graphic device that represents the unique characteristics of each department, such as a vertical line screen pattern for the video editing department and a dot pattern for the print department.
Each floor also has its own typeface and primary color that matches the architect’s color palette, further distinguishing each level and department. Graphic locations remain consistent on every floor, unifying the entire office environment. The supergraphics add visual texture to the solid blocks of color used throughout the space.
Informal gathering areas are also identified in a unique way. Poems by significant literary figures are cut out of the outer fabric shell of “meeting tents” on each floor, with the author’s last name used to identify the room. “Chatterbox” rooms are identified using a text bubble that calls out the corresponding floor number and letter. Large-scale witty phrases and pictograms identifying operational rooms also add to the bold, playful look.
“Brilliant use of type, color, and form create distinct wayfinding and a fun/energetic design to reflect the creativity of the end-user. Exceptionally detailed and designed elements.”