From concerts to exhibitions, film screenings to dance recitals, Northwestern University has always boasted a rich arts scene. But up until a few years ago, that scene lacked a cohesive marketing strategy. Because the university had no central method for promoting the arts, each venue and group would market its own events separately—until the construction of the Ryan Center for Musical Arts in 2012 sparked a movement to tie all the separate threads together.

Collaborating with Global Marketing, Studio Pax provided the messaging, visuals and website strategy to produce Arts Circle, a brand representing the entire spectrum of the arts at Northwestern. Together, we launched an integrated marketing campaign with the theme of “The Arts Together” that included digital, print and environmental elements to reach the university’s 21,000-plus students, as well as the greater surrounding Chicago community.

Schools & Venues

Yearly Performances

Environmental Graphics

Unique Event Branding


Technology underpins the visibility of all Northwestern Arts as one brand under the Arts Circle website. The seamless integration of the Northwestern Event Management (PlanIt Purple) with the Arts Circle website allows performances to shine by augmenting the capabilities of a simple text data stream with lush visuals and interactivity.

integrated creative campaign

Along the course of several quarters, Studio Pax crafted the original creatives and implemented all marketing deliverables across multiple channels (digital, transportation, direct marketing, emails, event) to ensure the initial delivery of the campaign and to develop the proper standards as the Arts Circle keeps evolving over the years.

“We sold more tickets and exposed more people
to new kinds of art.”
–Donna Biernadski, Assistant Vice President of Global Marketing. 

Arts Circle Celebration

A one-day celebration of the Arts at Northwestern

To signify the creation of the Arts Circle, a one-day festival brought life to the center of the Northwestern Arts campus. The Arts Circle Celebration presented performances and experiences ranging from the Trisha Brown Dance Company to a 40-foot Otto Piene installation to an avant-garde cello happening in honor of Charlotte Moorman. 

For the event, we put together an event branding package: ground signage was placed throughout the campus, mimicking the typical students posting that occur informally during the year. Programs, merchandising and banners were also created to complement the existing branding.  (Video Credits: Northwestern Global Marketing)

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