Earlier this month Studio 360, commissioned Pentagram partner Michael Beirut to tackle the problem of re-branding Christmas. The host, Kurt Anderson, is a former art director who often talks about design and branding and how they affect modern society.
During the show, Anderson argues that Christmas may be the biggest brand in American culture. But everyone you talk to agrees that it has become too commercial, too ugly, and from a religious point of view—too exclusive. The Pentagram team solves the problem by rolling out a whole new Christmas brand called x.mas. This updated Christmas look calls for the traditional red and green (gag) to be replaced with a series of whites represented the multiple faiths and points of view that all enjoy the holiday. The brand name, “x.mas” allows the “x” to be replaced with words and symbols as needed to accommodate messages and commercial ventures. This gives retail industry a place within the brand, without overpowering it with their own invasive marketing. They also proposed a .mas web suffix which could be sold to companies. The huge resulting income would raise enough money to make x.mas the largest charity organization on earth. Not a bad plan!
Of course, this is all elitist B.S. that will never fly in the real world. In fact, there would be a large portion of the population accusing you of being communist for proposing x.mas.
But we are design folks and it is Christmas time. So what the hell, lets see how Pentagram does Christmas. (I can guarantee, my grandmother will never understand that last sentence as long as she lives.)