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A quick Q&A with Marty Routledge about the identity he created for Johnny Wong’s Dumpling Bar.
What was the brief for the identity?
It’s a funny one… seeing as I directed the look and feel, in a way I designed the brief too – I have a lot of freedom with these guys, they trust my direction. In short we wanted a lo-fi looking logo that perhaps you would see on packaging arriving from China.
What was your design concept and how did you develop it? What were your inspirations?
I began looking at passport, import and custom stamps, amongst other Chinese monogrammatic symbols and variations of Chinese typefaces that are available on western computers..
Were you involved in just the identity design or did you have to run it across other touchpoints?
I worked closely with Riversdale Group (owners of Lo-Fi, The Standard and The Tate) and the man himself Johnny Wong to ensure that every detail was on point including sourcing and installing interior furnishings and fittings, designing and working with the neon signage guys, custom fortune cookies with free cocktail inserts, menus, social media, website etc. We commissioned one half of The Well Dressed Vandals to produce a video for Johnny which was perfectly inline with the type of guy Johnny is.
We then wanted to honour Johnny with a night based around his glorious dumplings… not surprising, Johnny loves hip-hop and in particular Wu-tang, so it was a no-brainer to come up with a night called ‘Wong-Tang’ we used the symbolic Wu-tang logo as a pun with the strap line ‘Enter the 36 dumplings’… (enter the 36 Chambers reference). On Wednesday night at Lo-Fi and Johnny Wongs we give away Wong Tang Crew Neck Jumpers at 10:36pm with a raffle that can be found by patrons under their bowls when first sitting down.
Who else was involved in the project?
It really was a combined effort by a key number of people within the venue, we are all varied in our skillsets and the democratic approach was well received by Johnny from concept, design, interior, promotion, PR, wong-tang, hosting, mixology, logistics, etc. In a way we are the Wong-Tang Clan.
Images below: The Johnny Wong logo, as well as a collection of inspiration sources for the logo.