Feat of Clay

French Open signage at Roland Garros

Paris in the springtime. These words conjure images of yellow flowers, purple sunsets, and, to tennis fans, red clay. Specifically, the distinctive red-orange clay of Paris’ Roland Garros tennis complex.

Since 1891, the world’s best have competed at Roland Garros to see who will lift La Coupe des Mousquetaires (The Musketeers’ Trophy), among others. This year, perennial champion Rafael Nadal won the men’s singles title and newcomer Jelena Ostapenko, the women’s.

With nearly 500,000 tennis fans pouring into the complex from all over the world, it is essential that the signage, message boards and wayfinding elements are world class. Every signage element at Roland Garros is charged with the task of being distinctive, yet still evocative of tennis’ restrained elegance.

In this sense, signs become ambassadors of an event, just as much as the facilities or people involved.

Enjoy this snapshot of the French Open. Paris in the springtime, with tennis.

The French Open is a celebration of tennis past and present. As witnessed by its many world class museums, few can marry modern technology and old world charm like the French. Here, the result is a distinctive event experience that both honors history and makes it at the same time.

Players make any tournament, and there are no shortage of them at the French Open. Past and current champions are represented on ads, posters and murals throughout the venue.

To best serve the event’s multilingual crowd, a strong graphic identity unifies the wayfinding system at Roland Garros. Whether strictly informative or slightly whimsical, the informational signage is easily identified by its striking, yet harmonious, green motif, easily readable font and bold logo.

Signs of the Times July 2020

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