VCA’s New Brand – In Contempt Of Parliament

Posted by savevca1 on April 29th, 2010

In true University of Melbourne style, Head of Performing Arts & VCAM Deputy Dean Kristy Edmunds sent out a quiet little email at the end of Tuesday inviting people to view concepts for a new “Visual Identity” for VCA – staff and students have until today to view the concepts. Yes that’s right – less than 2 days to view the concepts, and less than one days notice.

Kristy was at great pains to say the “visual identity” doesn’t include discussion around the Faculty name or logo. However anybody that has paid the “concepts” a visit would realise very quickly there is a suggested new ”flag”  for each VCA school (reminding us of our Play School days looking through the Arch, Circle and Square windows), which when joined together, form a new logo.

The University reconfiguration of the VCA branding and logo is in contempt of Parliament. The Heads of Agreement that merged VCA and University of Melbourne specifically detailed that VCA would “retain its title and logo (pentagram representing the five senses intertwined) for the purposes of branding, publicity and marketing of the VCA as a distinct entity and its programs both in Australia and internationally” (item 5). This latest move by the University proves they believe they are a law unto themselves (and thanks to silent Arts Ministers in both Victoria and Federally – they are).

Furthermore, this attempt to rebrand VCA whislt the University of Melbourne’s own review of VCA is underway is laughable. Need we remind Ms Edmunds that she is on the Review Committee, so she should at least pretend that she’s independently evaluating VCAM’s future (as opposed to busying herself with getting rid of VCA’s brand).

We suggest all staff and students pop down and see the concepts today (Thur 29/04/10) before 5PM before the University remove them (scroll down to see email from Kristy detailing display locations).

What are your thoughts? Should the VCA logo and brand we’ve all been fighting for be allowed to be replaced?

Should the current Victorian Government pursue the University for contempt of Parliament for their numerous breaches of the Heads of Agreement (which the Government enacted!)?

You can post your thoughts after the pictures below.



———- Forwarded message ———-

From: Colleen Wait <>

Date: Tue, Apr 27, 2010 at 4:25 PM

Subject: Faculty visual identity input

To: All Staff – VCAM <>




Dear colleagues


As you may be aware we have been working with an independent design studio to develop a visual identity for the Faculty.  For clarification, please note that a visual identity means the visual language by which we can be identified and doesn’t include discussion around the Faculty name or logo.  This project is running in tandem with a new website, and will provide the basis for our future printed and virtual collateral materials for public dissemination.


You are invited and enthusiastically encouraged to view and give your feedback on two differing visual concepts for the Faculty.  Based on student and staff response, preferences and suggestions, one of these concepts will be further refined and put forward for final approval to the Faculty Executive. 


The sample design concepts and a mechanism for feedback will be on display at both Parkville and Southbank campuses:


Southbank Campus

Lenton Parr Library

First Floor in the Hub

12pm – 5pm Wed 28 April

9am – 5pm Thurs 29 April


Parkville Campus

School of Music foyer area

12pm – 5pm Wed 28 April

9am – 5pm Thurs 29 April


Please feel free to drop in over the next few days – your input is welcome and important, as it will inform the future look and direction of the image design for the Faculty.


Professor Kristy Edmunds

Deputy Dean and Head, Performing Arts

Faculty of the VCA and Music

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6 Responses to “VCA’s New Brand – In Contempt Of Parliament”

  1. current student

    yes the new ‘identity’ stuff is quite alarming indeed… though it should be more so for the UoM as it makes it appear that the “provision for a de-merger” which they made specific mention of in the discussion paper was merely a cosmetic ploy to appease us all who would obviously support it!

    there was nothing wrong with the ‘heritage’ VCA logo and, if the review process is supposed to be informed by the submissions it asked for, the overwhelming majority of them being in support of a de-merger, why the hell is melb uni carrying on with its plans for a new logo!? and yes… all being done in typically quiet yet “consult-ative” melb uni style.

    to me the whole thing exposes the review process as a sham. it was nice to have ziggy listen to us and nod and emote in the student forums, but if the review committee isn’t going to take heed of the earnest responses to the discussion paper, why have it in the first place!?

    maybe all students should also hound kristy (and sharman’s who’s been quiet for a while now) emails demanding answers…?

  2. “Curiouser and curiouser”. “Laughable” yes but the outrage began, as I have previously observed, with the tautological addition of the word ‘Music’ and its initial ‘M’, as in VCA & M. Still prefer to think of music as just one of the art forms VCA embraces. I have nothing against updating visual identity (‘language’) but this is, to say the least, ‘clumsy’, given the current review. “Cart before horse?” At least – and the ingenuous “consultation” is just too obvious. Very poorly handled from a public relations/stakeholder perspective. Just asks for negative criticism and another blotch on UoM’s public image.

  3. concerned musician

    My two cents worth…..fight for the old logo…it’s a graphic reminder of what the VCA really stands for, not what UoM is trying to force it to become.

  4. Keep the old one, to remind us of a better time.
    the proposed design in the pictures above is one of the most ugly pieces of scribble i have ever seen. and i noticed the school of production missed out on its own logo :P

  5. Andrea Actor

    this is corporate branding theft and an elite arrogant imported voice

  6. I’m Confused… What do the “flags” show? Line, circles, blocks…. art? i think not

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