OCAD University Logo featuring pyramid artwork

OCADU: A dynamic identity for a changing institution

OCAD University, Canada's preeminent art and design school, sought a new visual identity and website that would reflect the 135-year-old institution's desire to move quickly into the future.

Embracing the opportunity and challenges that come with designing an identity for a design school, BMD began the project with an intensive research and stakeholder engagement phase.

Each year, the school invites a select group of graduating students to design a logo within the basic window framework, meaning that the emblem changes annually. As OCAD U grows and matures, a library of identities will emerge, with records of ideas and aesthetics gathered over time.


The identity translates seamlessly to the website, lending simplicity and flexibility to the experience. Modular frames and a black and white palette provide the canvas for fresh content and easy navigation for students, faculty and partners.

Person tracing photograph of the squares on OCAD University roof
Business card with red graphic
OCAD University student card
Side view of OCAD University
Designed by British architect Will Alsop, OCAD U's Sharp Centre for Design is a Toronto landmark.
OCAD University with CN tower in background

Inspired by the work of the students and the iconic and transformational Alsop-designed building, BMD created a base of black and white pixel ‘windows’— modular frames to hold actual student art and design work — for the mark. The result is a dynamic and modular identity.

OCAD University logo
OCAD University stationary
“A very good combination of serious starkness with creative whimsiness.”
Under Construction
OCAD University acceptance letter
OCAD University event poster
OCAD University Human Existentialism pamphlet
OCAD University website
OCAD University website about page
OCAD University website faculty of arts page
“The visual identity is a true reflection of OCAD — an inclusive, vibrant and vital institution built on creativity, risk and innovation.”
Stakeholder engagement research at OCAD University
Shields with drawings by OCAD University students
Group of students discussing at OCAD
Still frame of video introducing OCAD University's new branding
Next Project Brickline Greenway
Brickline Greenway