Malaysia is 60 years old this week and the Jalur Gemilang flag flaps proudly in the wind. Over the years we have seen various companies and institutions grow under the national banner while their logos have found their way into the eyes and hearts of onlookers both local and foreign alike.
Logo’s are able to capture and represent the core values of the companies and institutions that they are modeled for. On a national scale, they remind onlookers of the cultural identity of their local landscape, enshrining attributes that resonate with citizens of the country while informing visiting observers alike.
In our last piece we covered some logos which have become staple images in the average Malaysians association with local identity and with their nostalgic fondness of collected memories within the national framework. These are the logos that are able to capture that sense of community, heritage and pride that resonate with people of various walks of faith.
Continuing from our previous coverage and to pay tribute to our visual icons in the week of Merdeka, we delve into the wide world of logos and look at some Malaysian-centric iterations that have climbed to the top of our collective national consciousness over the years.
4. Bank Negara
The Bank Negara logo was formalized in 1964 and was inspired by the Kijang (Barking Deer) which has had multiple associations in Malaysian folklore and history. According to the official explanation however, the Kijang image was chosen because of its appearance on the gold coins of the state of Kelantan. Meanwhile, the sun in the logo rests as symbol of power while the crescent moon is a representation of the religion of Islam. The combination of these images brought together in symmetrical form encapsulate the traditional Malaysian identity and echo years of historical integrity to those that view it
5. Coliseum Cafe
A rare heritage spot in Kuala Lumpur, The Coliseum cafe on Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman is source of pride and great food to Malaysians. The bold, imperial, western style font stands tall and majestic next to its graphic in the shape of a hexagon mimicking a top down view layout of an actual Coliseum. The logo makes great use of space and gives the impression of a secure spot to imbibe the authentic western colonial Hainanese cuisine that Coliseum cafe is famous for. The phrase “since 1921” rests neatly below subtly implying classical nuance and noteworthy heritage in stylish and memorable fashion forming a staple imagery for locals and visitors to retain and appreciate.
6. Royal Selangor Golf Club
Founded in 1893 by passionate golf enthusiasts, the Royal Selangor Golf Club is another iconic enterprise that has established itself as a milestone in our local landscape. The clubs crest was created in 1968 by prize-winning architect David Joyce who had vast experience in the making of coat-of-arms designs. The shield is a representation of power and strength while the two Kris’s symbolize justice. The crown signifies royalty while the three colours of green, red and yellow are derived from the clubs official flag with green signifying the golf course while red and yellow are the Selangor State colours. The logo exudes strength, resilience and organization through its solid, isometric design giving viewers that sense of respect and admiration that the club has successfully garnered over the years.
Hence we see that a logo is far more than a simple sum of visuals. It reaches into the depths to pluck relevant imagery that accurately symbolizes the deepest values of a company or institution, arranging it in a manner that is both attractive to the eye as well meaningful in its message. Logos are the net personality of the brands they represent and when executed effectively can relay bold and subtle messages pertaining to history, culture, identity and virtue.
This week, in celebrating our independence day, let’s take some time to reflect on the images that have made us proud to be Malaysians who raise their banners high, in all their shapes and forms, proudly for all to see. Selamat Hari Merdeka, Malaysia!
So concludes our brief foray into the local landscape of brand logos. If you think we missed out on some key iconic one’s feel free to let us know what your personal picks are.
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