By Admin I : With every mall’s inauguration in that small country a big question mark suddenly appears; this confusion is not only design related as you have read in the title, but more importantly about the lack of socio-cultural awareness in some of the firms taking the responsibility of branding such a huge popular venue called “a mall”.
It is true that mall-addiction is in particular a western ritual, and that “souks” were mainly our version of the ultimate shopping paradise. Sadly, even souks now are taking the form of a mall, without baring in mind that there’s a whole cultural background related to our identity and existence and taking for granted the fact that the Lebanese and Arab culture is full of branding’s “lovebites” whether visually or conceptually.
From the horrific gradients of the coming “Beirut city-center”, to the umm-also 1980s gradients of the Citymall logo, arriving to the pretentious serif/sans serif fusion of “Le Mall’s” logo and the successful minimalism of “abc”, nothing seems to be of a true Lebanese origin, as if we belong to the country of “Nowhersitan“, oh wait! even “Nowheristan” has an identity!!
(We’re here only featuring logos and ignoring the fact that most of those malls have random signage and wayfinding systems that look imported from a free vector website, with no link to the prior designed identity)
So to summarize the whole dilemma for non-designers, we have a whole set of logos for malls, some are copied (aka Beirut souks got toooo much inspiration from a British design agency’s logo, and this agency called “Lambie Nairn” actually did many Arab Tv networks’ identities like Al-Arabiya (somebody got balls to copy that, huh!?)- thanks Arabad for the reveal) to the interesting attempts like abc (being now applied as an architectural pattern in the abc Dbayyeh renovation, to be revealed soon) which make us stuck with identities that have nothing to do with us, Lebanese! Having malls that can be here or there or everywhere, reflecting a demeaning image of the local creative scene that is shown to be lacking originality…
And that’s a very serious issue my friends!