13 April 2017
Back to my logo series, today I'd like to tell you the story of one of my favourite logos, the Deutsche Bank logo. I only discovered this logo after moving to the UK, and when I did, I was in awe. It was leagues away from any bank identity I had known in North America.
The "what does it mean" story is refreshingly simple. The square symbolizes security and control. The slah stands for growth and development. Summed up: growth in a stable environment. That's it. Nothing else.
The "how did it come about" story is even more remarkable. First, they actually paid eight designers for submitting concepts. Yes, they paid them, and it was a decent amount of cash. And yes, eight different designers. Second, Deutsche Bank appointed an independent jury on which was hardly any bankers or marketing people. Instead it was a jury of other designers and a magazine editor. No, there were no marketing people involved. No marketing people! This explains why such a sophisticated, progressive logo was accepted for this bank.
The designer was a man in his sixties called Anton Stankowski, who was one of West Germany's leading graphic designers. He was also an artist and he did not distinguish between "art" and "design," as these were one of the same to him. Above you can see one of his paintings.
The logo has not changed at all since it was conceived in 1974, but I mean really, why should it?