About the new ACE - Adelaide Contemporary Experimental

Street view of six branded posters displayed on a wall.
Street view of six branded posters displayed on a wall.
ACE posters (2022).

About the name-change

With the defined ACE acronym, we recognise and celebrate the ‘Experimental’ legacy of AEAF and the ‘Contemporary’ vision of CACSA in our year-round program of free exhibitions by practicing South Australian, Australian, and international artists. 

In changing our name to a fixed acronym and re-launching our brand, we are matching ACEs visual language to the energy and maturity of our artistic programming and signalling our special place in the world, says ACE Artistic Director, Patrice Sharkey.

“The open nature of the ACE Open acronym has always been well intentioned – that is, it served as an open invitation for what the organisation can be and do. After six years of operating, the organisation has grown-up (so to speak) and established its place within the wider arts community. While we remain a flexible and responsive space for art and artists, we also know exactly who we are: situated on Kaurna Land in Adelaide, we support and celebrate art that is contemporary and experimental.”

Two large exterior banners featuring the ACE logos, displayed on the Northern side of ACE's building.
Two large exterior banners featuring the ACE logos, displayed on the Northern side of ACE's building.
ACE exterior signage (2022). Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.

About the brand identity

We worked with the next generation of talented South Australian creatives on the website and brand identity to signal the organisation’s new era, including; designer Tyrone Ormbsy (Person Books, Super Assembly); Adelaide-born type and graphic designer Dennis Grauel; interior and furniture designer Claire Markwick-Smith; and illustrator and designer Jasmin Neophytou. 

“From the outset of this exercise it was important that this project would feed back into the local economy and support local artists and creative industries,” says Patrice.

“We're extremely proud of the small team of young creative professionals that we trusted to deliver this re-brand for ACE; all of whom are incredible South Australian talent. What they have created for ACE is sensitively considered, flexible, playful, and evergreen.” 

Split image displaying the open hours on the gallery front door (left) and new gallery furniture and custom A-frame (right)..
Split image displaying the open hours on the gallery front door (left) and new gallery furniture and custom A-frame (right)..
ACE front door signage. Front room of gallery with furniture designed and manufactured by Claire Markwick-Smith. A-frame by Tom Golin. Photography by Jonathan Van Der Knaap.
Split image of A-frame sign (left) and exterior of ACE gallery (right).
Split image of A-frame sign (left) and exterior of ACE gallery (right).
A-frame by Tom Golin, exterior signage by Claire Markwick-Smith (2022). Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.
Detail shot of ACE exterior signage attached to an exterior beam.
Detail shot of ACE exterior signage attached to an exterior beam.
Tyrone Ormsby and Claire Markwick-Smith (2022), ACE exterior signage. Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.
Split image featuring detail of yellow A-frame legs (left) and the full A-frame (right).
Split image featuring detail of yellow A-frame legs (left) and the full A-frame (right).
ACE A-frame by Tom Golin (2022). Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.
A detail shot of custom-made aluminium and powder-coated merchandise stand, with focus on joinery.
A detail shot of custom-made aluminium and powder-coated merchandise stand, with focus on joinery.
Custom gallery furniture by Claire Markwick-Smith (2022), detail. Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.

ACE's new type-driven brand identity focuses on communication, accessibility, and experimentation. Tyrone undertook extensive research into the archives of CACSA and AEAF for inspiration; ACE is the custodian of these archives that contain the historic legacies of CACSA and AEAF. 

From that, Tyrone and Dennis Grauel designed a custom typeface called ACE. The ACE typeface contains humanistic, idiosyncratic, inky letterforms full of the character and warmth found throughout much of the archive's printed matter. 

Photograph of 'Studios: 2021' catalogues stacked tall on the merchandise stand.
Photograph of 'Studios: 2021' catalogues stacked tall on the merchandise stand.
‘Studios: 2021’ catalogue and custom gallery furniture (2022), detail. Photography by Jonathan van der Knaap.
A green double-page excerpt from the 'Studios: 2021' catalogue.
A green double-page excerpt from the 'Studios: 2021' catalogue.
‘Studios: 2021’ catalogue, index page, detail.
  • Regular, Narrow, Condensed, and Compressed typeface widths displayed in the ‘ACE’ typeface, demonstrating the ACE brand identity.
  • Alphabet and numbers displayed in the ‘ACE’ typeface, demonstrating the ACE brand identity.
  • Ryan Presley's artwork credit, demonstrating the ‘ACE’ typeface and brand identity.
  • Custom symbols as part of the ‘ACE’ typeface, demonstrating the ACE brand identity.
Regular, Narrow, Condensed, and Compressed typeface widths displayed in the ‘ACE’ typeface, demonstrating the ACE brand identity.

About the website

The new website has been designed and developed by Person Books in consultation with Rockethouse and ACE. ACE was awarded $100,000 from Arts SA to invest in new digital infrastructure to offer audiences alternative modes of connection as part of its Covid support and recovery package. 

The new custom-built site is fully accessible to accommodate auditory, cognitive, neurological, physical, and visual access.

The site sets a benchmark for accessibility and integration of new technology that will allow us to move deeper in the digital age to commission and present artworks online, as well as dynamic video and interactive artist content. First up, this includes new video commissions by South Australian artists Tamara Baillie and Henry Jock Walker, and a new Welcome to Country video commission by South Australian emerging filmmaker Kiara Milera that will be released during NAIDOC Week (July 2023).

Render of a laptop displaying the new ACE website.
Render of a laptop displaying the new ACE website.
‘ACE’ typeface uses the variable width to increase legibility at smaller sizes.
Render of a smartphone displaying the new ACE website.
Render of a smartphone displaying the new ACE website.
Increased counter spaces in the ‘regular’ width enhances legibility at smaller type sizes.
Custom illustration of two happy hands in a 'high five' action.
Custom illustration of two happy hands in a 'high five' action.
Jasmin Neophytou (2022), illustration for ACE.

Creative Direction

Tyrone Ormsby

Typeface

Dennis Grauel

Furniture

Claire Markwick-Smith

A-frame

Tom Golin

Illustration

Jasmin Neophytou

Web Development

Rockethouse

Photography

Jonathan van der Knaap

ACE tampinthi, ngadlu Kaurna yartangka panpapanpalyarninthi (inparrinthi). Kaurna miyurna yaitya mathanya Wama Tarntanyaku. Parnaku yailtya, parnaku tapa purruna, parnaku yarta ngadlu tampnthi. Yalaka Kaurna miyurna itu yailtya, tapa purruna, yarta kuma puru martinthi, puru warri-apinthi, puru tangka martulayinthi.

ACE respectfully acknowledges the traditional Country of the Kaurna people of the Adelaide Plains and pays respect to Elders past and present. We recognise and respect their cultural heritage, beliefs and relationship with the land. We acknowledge that they are of continuing importance to the Kaurna people living today.