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visual styles

Wayfinding & Signage

A wayfinding system helps to create connections between a visitor and the physical environment. When a visitor navigates one of our public spaces, there should be clear communication and consideration in design that helps bring awareness to the Smithsonian brand. The following pages demonstrate ways the Smithsonian brand can be considered in solving wayfinding problems.


The center of the diagram below is the most important touchpoint for brand recognition. At this stage of the visitors’ experience, it should be obvious that they are in a Smithsonian museum. As visitors begin to explore the interior walls of one of our museums, Smithsonian brand awareness becomes less dominant and the connection is made with the unit brand. This is to promote the opportunity we have to create stories and connect with our audience.



The example below shows how co-branding can be applied to museum signage.