Bearing witness—in real time

National Museum of African American History & Culture
Campaign branding, website, print

gallery in dramatic shape reminiscent of open pages of book

The Challenge

What can history reveal to us about the present? The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture is a beacon for millions seeking understanding and community. And as history-making events unfold with each passing day, the demand for a shared understanding is unyielding. We built a narrative around the singular role the Museum plays in shaping perceptions and facilitating connection. The campaign brand—a bold positioning and stunning visual vocabulary—expresses the Museum’s role as a guardian and interpreter of our American history, introduces the new Director’s vision, celebrates campaign donors, and invites new donors to join.

The Impact

Lipman Hearne created a striking and modern graphic identity, campaign idea, landing page, and customizable print leave-behinds to celebrate campaign impact and signal the impact of enduring investment. Shortly after the public launch of the campaign, the Museum had secured more than 67 percent of its fundraising goal, having raised $234 million of the $350 million goal. The campaign co-chairs and honorary co-chairs include iconic media and business leaders and two former presidents and first ladies.

Project components

  • Name/theme
  • Logo/visual identity
  • Message platform
  • Campaign case brochure
  • Campaign priority leave-behinds
  • Website
  • Video framework
  • Style guide
Living History: Campaign for The National Museum of African American History & Culture primary logo
Living History: Campaign for The National Museum of African American History & Culture horizontal logo
Living History: Campaign for The National Museum of African American History & Culture stacked logo
Campaign website on laptop: History Lives in You
Web page detail: Campaign Priorities
web page detail: Growth and Sustainability
website with campaign video on laptop
website page with videos on iPad and phone
LIVING graphic with museum campus in background
mockup of NMAAHC print ad in NYTimes
detail of NMAAHC NYTimes print ad
Campaign sell sheets