Kathleen Syme Library
and Community Centre

The 139 year-old Kathleen Syme building in Carlton was transformed into the area’s first-of-its-kind creative, learning and community space. Nexus Designs was engaged by the City of Melbourne to help deliver this transformation. Our brief was to create signage and wayfinding that struck the right balance between the Victorian-era architecture, the specially commissioned indigenous artwork of Wurundjeri artist Mandy Nicholson, (as an acknowledgement of the traditional owners) and adherence to the distinctive characteristics of the City of Melbourne logo and brand guidelines.

We incorporated Mandy Nicholson’s circular patterns by overlapping two steel layers and engraving the background layer. This subtle approach becomes the feature but also brings forth a balanced connection between history, the traditional owners and the present. The angular signs reference City of Melbourne’s “M” logotype and the building’s internal and external arches and archways. For the corridors, we devised flag signs as a 3-dimensional extension of the ground level signs. We also worked closely with the signage manufacturers to ensure specified substrates stayed true to the styleguide and complement the interior finishes.

Photography: Parallax Photography (David McArthur)
Signage Manufacturer: TigerCorp