Stellenbosch University unveils its new logo

By Zodidi Dano Time of article published Apr 14, 2021

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STELLENBOSCH University (SU) has revealed its new logo which was approved by the university’s council yesterday.

The new logo is designed to renew the university’s brand identity.

“The new ‘S’-stream logo will replace the ‘S’-leaf logo that has been in use since 2000,” the university said.

Rector and vice-chancellor Professor Wim de Villiers said: “The world over, brand positioning is crucial for universities, ultimately affecting their reputation, ranking and funding.

“Our new logo is modern and streamlined, yet still has the gravitas of a classic and elegant logo, with immediate presence and visibility, as befits an institution with world-class academic standing, aspiring to be Africa’s leading research-intensive university by 2040.”

The university said two elements were at the heart of its new logo. The first was the “S” of Stellenbosch, expressed in rhythmic lines that resonate with the warmth and vibrancy of the continent. Second, the lines form streams that flow continuously within a “U” for University.

Professor Elmarie Costandius, senior lecturer in Visual Arts and part of the university’s visual redress committee and the logo design team, called the new SU logo “distinctive, appropriate, memorable and timeless”.

“The rhythmic lines created by the repetitive ‘S’, as well as the counter spaces in between, remind us of entopic symbols that span across cultures and languages,” she said.

The new logo also contains the words “Stellenbosch” and “University” in each of the three South African languages used by the institution – English, isiXhosa and Afrikaans.

SU’s institutional slogan, “Forward together, sonke siya phambili, saam vorentoe”, again in the university’s three languages, constitutes the final element, with all logo components bound together as a cohesive whole.

As the colour maroon is the most recognisable, distinctive brand asset that differentiates SU from competitors, it has been retained as the university’s primary colour.

The colour gold has been introduced, signifying SU’s commitment to excellence. In applications of the logo, an extended colour palette will be used, reflecting the earthiness and vibrancy of the university’s natural surrounds.

Professor Hester Klopper, deputy vice-chancellor: strategy and internationalisation, who has been spearheading the rebranding initiative, said the process of developing the renewed identity was based on extensive consultation.

“The new logo is a co-creation following extensive engagement with key stakeholders. At least 3 100 stakeholders participated and contributed to the process,” Klopper said.

In adopting the new logo yesterday, SU council chairperson George Steyn said: “The new SU logo is a creative expression of where we are now and where we see ourselves going in the future.

“The commemoration of SU’s centenary in 2018 created a significant opportunity to plan for the future SU we wish to create.

“We did that with Vision 2040, and the new logo succeeds in visually encapsulating that, but also strikes a fine balance between an institution with heritage and the need to progress into the future.”

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