Irish Traditional Music Archive (ITMA)

ITMA holds the largest collection of Irish traditional music in existence and collects, preserves, organises and disseminates materials relating to it. Although much of their focus is on the past, traditional music is very much a living artform and ITMA wanted to reflect that in their new identity.

The process began with a series of workshop sessions and interviews that formed a comprehensive brief. The take-home from these sessions was that ITMA’s needed to be rebranded in a nuanced way that avoided lapsing into clichés.

Our team visited ITMA, exploring their trove of music, instruments, articles, and manuscripts. We noted the extensive use of a Gaelic typeface which has featured heavily throughout Irish traditional music from songbooks to pub signage.

This inspired a modernised version of this typeface for the logotype which was crafted to be contemporary while paying homage to its historic origins. The letter “A” features a ‘bow’-like detail inspired by traditional instruments like fiddles and harps.

Across the roll-out you’ll see that the letterforms are allowed to simply dance across the page giving a real sense that this is a living and relevant artform.

Following a competitive tender we commissioned Red Dog based on their stable of work in the Arts and also because they seemed to immediately grasp what we needed. Engaging with our staff and other stakeholders they crafted a positioning paper which was very helpful, as well as  a very clear creative brief.

Our new identity made our 2017. We love it! It has huge potential and positions us as the organisation we want to be – steeped in tradition and heritage but prepared for the future.

Each member of the Red Dog team was excellent: collaborative; creative and considered. I would happily recommend Red Dog as a creative partner to any organisation and we look forward to working with them again and again.

Grace Toland
Director, Irish Traditional Music Archive

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