Harry Pearce created the identity of the cloisters of the Church of Santa Caterina in Naples, referencing the art, craft, culture and creativity of the area.

From the Series

With its rich history of Ancient Greek origins in the form of architecture, monuments, art and craft traditions, Naples became a UNESCO World Heritage Site for cultural significance in 1995.

The cloisters of the Church of Santa Caterina in the historic centre of the city had fallen into disrepair in recent years but lately a group of friends took it upon themselves to restore the area to its former glory. They called the restoration project Made In Cloister, working to inject life back into the cloister through art, craft, culture and creativity. 

Harry Pearce of Pentagram was asked to create an identity for the initiative. To ensure that he could conceptualise and produce a true graphic representation of the place Pearce started by immersing himself in Naples.

Pearce also wanted to ensure that the identity represented all the different aspects of Made In Cloister, including the artists-in-residence, the platform for artisan craft-making, the café, the gift shop and the ongoing exhibitions

The realisation that the graphic language of the city is inseparable from its architecture became the inspiration for the C-symbol that was created to form the actual cloister arch and doorway.

Alongside the C-symbol Pearce used a stencil alphabet, inspired by all the stencil lettering in the streets around the cloister. Similarly, the colours and textures of the city form the basis of the colour palette for the identity.

Says Pearce of the project: “I made several visits to Naples and spent many days walking there, losing myself in the spirit of one of the most beautiful, inspiring and unnerving cities in the world. The power of colour, texture and raw typography is visceral. Between the bone-strewn subterranean world of the crypts and the vaulted sunlit domes of churches, the living streets are clothed in poetry, protest and love.”

Watch the Talk with Harry Pearce