ROM Vibrant at 99

New Visual Identity and Centennial Countdown Announced

The new ROM logo(Toronto, Ontario – March 19, 2013) – At an event held today, the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) celebrated its 99th birthday with a fresh outlook – unveiling a new visual identity and announcing plans for its upcoming centennial.   The dynamic visual identity is a representation of the Museum’s new strategic plan, positioning the ROM as connecting visitors to their world and each other.

“This is a shift from a logo that represents the building to one that symbolizes access to our collections and knowledge.”

 Janet Carding, ROM Director and CEO

“The previous ROM logo was as a symbol for Renaissance ROM, the fundraising campaign that transformed the Museum with the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal and gallery renovations.  It represented the ROM’s building and its bold energy,” said Janet Carding, ROM Director and CEO.  “We’re changing our visual identity now to focus on the Museum as an indispensable resource. We’re placing the ROM’s encyclopedic collections, research and curatorial expertise at the heart of the new brand, and showing how, through the ROM, people can connect to their world. “

The “O” in the ROM is conceptualized as a lens, a portal to the ROM’s collections, and to understanding the natural and cultural worlds.  The new brand is adaptable through the addition of a wide variety of images from the Museum’s natural history and world culture collections, as well as images from contemporary life. 

The identity was developed with LaPlaca Cohen, a New York-based marketing and communications consultancy focused on the cultural marketplace, with clients including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Tate and The Guggenheim.
“The logo symbolizes access and connection, and it also suggests flexibility,” said Arthur Cohen, CEO, LaPlaca Cohen. “This isn’t a logo for an authoritarian museum that presents a rigid experience, but an institution that is changing with the times, that is influenced by the communities to which it responds, and is alive and surprising.”

Centres of Discovery
The ROM’s encyclopedic scope can be overwhelming. To increase access to its vast collections and curatorial expertise, it now has eight areas of focus.  Three of these have now evolved into Centres of Discovery – Ancient Cultures, Biodiversity, and Contemporary Culture.  The others - Canada, Earth & Space, Fossils & Evolution, Textiles & Fashions and World Art & Culture, will all eventually become centres  and serve as ROM sub-brands, using imagery that relates to each to help people better understand the Museum’s scope and to connect with the vibrant ROM communities most relevant to them.

Countdown to ROM Centennial
The new brand launch coincides with the official countdown to the ROM’s year-long centennial celebrations commencing in March 2014, featuring a 48-hour event with unprecedented access to the collections, research and stories of the ROM.  The year will offer many opportunities for people to become involved in commemorating this milestone, including ROM Recollects: A History of the ROM as told by its Visitors, an online compilation of memorable moments, Love the ROM, a community fundraising campaign, a centennial book in collaboration with The Walrus Foundation featuring a wide range of Canadian writers, and ROM Magazine Looks Back, with special features celebrating the last century’s red letter moments.

Throughout 2014, the Museum galleries will feature curated retrospectives in each of the eight new themes, running the gamut from the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon to the history of Decorative Arts over the last century.  Symposiums including the Future of Museums in a Digital World and the Evolution of Conservation are planned.  A ROM centennial gala is scheduled for November 2014. This spectacular event, co-chaired by Senator Nicole Eaton and Bonnie Brooks, will celebrate the Museum's rich history and exciting future. For more information on these and other ROM centennial initiatives, visit