“Adler Planetarium Introduces New Logo for 90th Anniversary”

Yesterday, Monday, January 20, A.D. 2020, the Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum debuted a new logo as part of celebrations this year to mark the ninetieth anniversary of its having opened in 1930.  The new logo consists of a yellow capital or uppercase letter “A” where the crossbar seems to be a comet tail that encircles the two strokes (slanting arms) of the “A” triangle with the comet nucleus emerging, unconnected to the right stroke in the upper right hand corner of the logo, near the apex of the triangle.

Erin Wilson, Senior Director of Marketing, wrote in a post on The Adler ‘Scope blog, “Our new identity is designed to challenge conventional expectations with unexpected moments of creativity and surprise.  The biggest surprise might be that we’ve chosen yellow as our primary color.  It’s bright, it’s cheerful, it’s optimistic—much like people’s moods when the Sun is shining! (That was no coincidence.) We’re incorporating bold and welcoming fonts, rich imagery that includes photography and our world-renowned collection items, and community-based illustrations.  What we’re affectionately called the ‘Adlerverse’ is a collection of hand-drawn stars and doodles from the staff and volunteers that are featured throughout the new identity.  These illustrations represent the true nature of how this brand was built—authentically, as a team.”

In a press release, the Adler Planetarium stated, “More than just a logo, the new Adler identity acts as a beacon of hope for anyone who ever thought science was inaccessible.  It is a symbol that reminds us all to look up and explore the universe together because it takes EVERYONE to do science—only together, with our collective knowledge and skills, can we truly create a better world for everyone.  When Michelle Larson took the helm as CEO in 2013, she took this vision to heart and made it her mission to supercharge the experience and the enthusiasm the entire staff has for inspiring curiosity and connections to the sky.”

“We are an incubator for inclusive science,” Dr. Larson stated.  We spark curiosity because as humans, we all have a seat at the table.”

The Adler Planetarium stated, “Rooted in a solid foundation of more than eighteen months of work to define a strategic framework including a new mission, vision, brand promise, values, and personality, followed by another twelve months of visual positioning work that included stakeholder interviews, mood boards, workshops and presentations, the new Adler Planetarium brand brings to life an identity designed to challenge conventional expectations with unexpected moments of creativity and surprise.  Developed and designed by branding partners Pause for Thought and The Change Project, the Adler Planetarium’s new brand boats yellow as a the primary color, leverages bold and welcoming fonts, features rich imagery, and community-created background illustrations.  The move towards yellow was choiceful [sic][1]—it’s bright, cheerful and optimistic—the Sun! To ensure the primary yellow color could be received equally and consistently across various channels by all current and future guests, the Adler conducted additional researching using ADA guidelines and creative best practices to mitigate vision challenges associated with color blindness… Through this collective work, the Adler Planetarium is poised for the next 90 years and beyond to advance its mission as we explore the universe together, and as our founder Max Adler once said, ‘find new interests and fresh inspiration so that science may be advanced.’”

Figure 1 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: The Adler Planetarium added the new logo both indoors and outdoors on Sunday, January 19, A.D. 2020 in preparation for the announcement on Monday, January 20, A.D. 2020.
Figure 2 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we Adler Planetarium staff members, at least one of whom is wearing a uniform t-shirt that incorporates the new capital “A” logo in the word STAFF (spelt in all caps), preparing to install a new logo indoors on Sunday, January 19, A.D. 2020.
Figure 3 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: This window has the best view close-up of the new logo of any of the pictures released by the Adler Planetarium.
Figure 4 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see a woman (with star-shaped earrings) applying a white star decal to a wall.  Stars representing the firmament are also part of the new logo, at least in its fullest iteration.
Figure 5 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see a staff member applying star and planet decals to a window or glass door, surrounding the Adler Planetarium’s new capital “A” logo.
Figure 6 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new logo in an exhibit panel (near the Historic Atwood Sphere) about the “Scopes in the City” educational program that brings telescopes out to the public.
Figure 7 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new logo at the Adler Planetarium’s Space Shop gift shop.
Figure 8 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new Adler Planetarium logo on a wall panel in the lobby, on a lectern, and on a sign mounted in a stanchion sign holder. In the background, we see part of Alfonso Iannelli’s famous display of our solar system’s eight planets.
Figure 9 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: From another angle, we see the new Adler Planetarium logo on a wall panel in the lobby, on a lectern, and on a sign mounted in a stanchion sign holder.
Figure 10 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new logo on an English-language Adler Planetarium Guest Guide.
Figure 11 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new Adler Planetarium logo on a display box for the Space Shop.  Notice, in the background, the top of Sir Henry Moore’s Man Enters the Cosmos.
Figure 12 Credit: Adler Planetarium Caption: Here, we see the new Adler Planetarium logo at the Cosmic Café.

Illinois Resident Discount Days in 2020

As I reported on January 8th, the Adler Planetarium has Illinois Resident Discount Days from the 7th to the 9th and from the 20th to the 22nd of January; from the 4th to the 6th, from the 11th to the 13th, and from the 17th to the 20th of February; from the 9th to the 12th of March; from the 20th to the 23rd of April; from the 10th to the 16th of May; on the 2nd, 9th, and 16th of June; on the 22nd, 23rd, and 31st of August; from the 1st to the 4th of September; from the 12th to the 15th of October; on the 11th of November, and from the 17th to the 19th of November; and from the 2nd to the 4th of December.   On these days, Illinois residents receive free admission to the Museum.  Note this does not include the famous Atwood Sphere or sky shows.  Illinois residents can upgrade to Museum Entry + 2 pass that covers the Atwood Sphere Experience and sky shows at a discounted price.  This is an opportunity for families with preschool-aged children, homeschooling families, and adults with open schedules. 

About the Adler Planetarium     

      The Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum is located at the northeastern corner of Northerly Island.[2]  A causeway connects Northerly Island to the mainland, making it more of an L-shaped peninsula.  Northerly Island is part of the Chicago Park District’s Burnham ParkThe Field Museum of Natural History, the John G. Shedd Aquarium, and Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum comprise the Museum Campus at the northern end of Burnham Park, east of Grant Park in downtown Chicago.  Soldier Field and the Lakeside Center of McCormick Placeare immediately south of the Museum Campus.[3]        

      This time of year, the Adler Planetarium is open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  It will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. for Spring Break from Monday, March 23, 2020 through Saturday, April 18, 2020.  Summer Hours, also 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., will be in effect between the two civic holidays of Memorial Day (Monday, May 25, 2020) and Labor Day (Monday, September 7, 2020).  The Adler Planetarium will be closed on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, November 26, 2020) and Christmas Day (Friday, December 25, 2020).  It will again be open from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. during “Winter Break” from Saturday, December 26, 2020 (the 2nd Day of Christmas) through Thursday, December 31, 2020 (the 7th Day of Christmas and New Year’s Eve).

      The address is 1300 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60605.  The phone number is (312) 922-7827.  The Website U.R.L. is https://www.adlerplanetarium.org.


[1] Choiceful is an obscure adjective that means the subject is fickle.  I believe they were trying to convey it was a deliberate choice.

[2] It is the only island from a chain of artificial islands Daniel Hudson Burnham, Senior (1846-1912) and Edward H. Bennett (1874-1954) called for in the Plan of Chicago.

[3] The Arie Crown Theater is inside the Lakeside Center.

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