Take a Closer Look at NASA's Futuristic Logo From the '70s

Calling to mind visions of the future from when it was introduced in the ’70s, to when it was replaced again in 1992.

Design
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In 1974, NASA enlisted the help of New York creative agency Danne & Blackburn to design a new logo to replace the red-and-blue roundel that had accompanied the space agency since its founding in the ’50s — a logo which had fondly become known as “the Meatball.” The resulting design was undeniably ahead of its time with its pared-back yet bold logotype format, so much so that design critic Alice Rawthorn said of the logo: “Everything about the worm is seductively new, optimistic and futuristic, declaring that NASA is leading us toward a brighter, bolder future. The message is so clear that it doesn’t need to be explained by words or pictures.” Accompanying the introduction of the logo was a comprehensive handbook detailing the exact ways in which the logo, which later came to be known as “the Worm,” was to be used on all manners of NASA property — clothes, stationary, ground and air transport vehicles, and spaceships. Take a look at the original manual above, and read the backstory behind the logo as told by its graphic designers at Display.

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