It’s a depiction of a bison walking uphill against the wind underneath the Northern Lights with a flame that represents reconciliation with Indigenous people.
A new tourism campaign by Travel Manitoba? Nope. It’s the University of Manitoba’s new logo.
The logo, which is attracting rave reviews, and is the result of almost two years of meetings, feedback, discussions, focus groups and more, was unveiled on the university’s website on Wednesday.
John Kearsey, the university’s vice-president external, said already the institution has been overwhelmed with positive feedback.
"We think it is beautiful and bold," Kearsey said.
"We wanted something which would tell the story of the university, which would attract students from around the world, and which would resonate with our local community and resonate with donors.
"And I’m getting compliments from elders and others in the Indigenous community about the flame — they knew we had listened to them. We are committed to reconciliation. We wanted to deliver on it."
But, while Kearsey said the vibrant blue colour in the logo represents the sky, Northern Lights and water. While the bison, ground and flame are in the university’s traditional colours of brown and gold.
"Everybody wanted something new with colour, but nobody wanted to get rid of brown and gold," he said.
Kearsey said in the future the university will put the logo on signage as it needs to be replaced, and on stationery as it runs out.
"We are being financially responsible," he said.
"It will be on our website."
But as for the diplomas, which students receive at graduation, Kearsey said they will continue to have the university’s crest, not the new logo.
David Barnard, the university’s president and vice-chancellor, said in a statement that it is his "sincere hope is that all of us who are a part of the University of Manitoba community find something in the new visual expression that speaks to our understanding of this transformative institution.
"This new visual identity is one part of our collective story, intended to help all us build bridges with our partners and audiences. As it launches and enables new, more meaningful connections, we will continue to engage in the vibrant conversation with our community on how the University of Manitoba can best serve its core mission of learning, discovery and outreach."
Kevin Rollason is one of the more versatile reporters at the Winnipeg Free Press. Whether it is covering city hall, the law courts, or general reporting, Rollason can be counted on to not only answer the 5 Ws — Who, What, When, Where and Why — but to do it in an interesting and accessible way for readers.
Updated on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 8:21 AM CDT: Corrects typo
3:11 PM: Adds logo.