October 24, 2012

(Re)Brand USA: Project 3 / Playlab, Inc.

Over the four weeks leading up to the presidential election, four separate designers/design firms will tackle the not-so-small problem of rebranding the United States. More detailed posts on this project series can be read here and here. Two weeks ago was Jeremy Mende / MendeDesign. Last week, MGMT. design. This week: Playlab, Inc.


The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

asked The Office of PlayLab, Inc. to rebrand America,

but America doesn’t need it.

From its museums of Modern Art to the Mississippi river,

from its mass protests to its McDonald’s,

there’s a million things happening all the time.

Good or bad, it doesn’t matter.

What would a brand do that those things don’t already do themselves?

Countries rebrand themselves not for lack of something.

They do it because they’re unsure of something.

America is 236 years old.

That’s young.

It makes mistakes, but it knows it.

It can be hectic, but it’s cool with that.

It succeeds and it fails, but in both cases, it knows it can do better.

As diverse as it is big,

it has 50 states, 198 nationalities and 313 religions.

America doesn’t want a consistent brand.

It has no mold to fit into.

It has people, an opportunity, and a flag.

A flag that’s on the fucking moon.


The Office of PlayLab, Inc. has been, is, and always will be the collaborative art and design practice of Archie Lee Coates IV and Jeffrey Franklin. Officially incorporated in New York in 2008, we started making things together in 2005, and we won’t be stopping anytime soon. We keep the studio simple. We’re not always sure what we’re doing, or where we’re going. It’s a place where we can try things. To explore and test ideas. Sometimes we do things for ourselves, and sometimes for others. We’re interested in everything. We see what we see when we get there.


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