Branding the American Landscape

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The art of graphic communication has played a significant role in shaping the cultural landscape of the urban environment. In particular, corporations, in the rush to fill every last surface and unclaimed airwave, have turned our environment into relentless advertising space. The public may take advantage of sporting events, concerts, museum exhibits, theatre experiences - practically any form of entertainment or public activity in the urban landscape - but must understand that they are being taken advantage of as well. The constant exposure to logos, signs, bulletins, brochures, even the names of the events and venues themselves must begin to affect the psyche and behavior of the audience members. Or does it? Is this practice something we merely accept as a necessary cost of our entertainment pursuits? Is it something that has deeper-reaching effects on the subconscious of the public, defining our values and shaping our culture? The author explores the invasion of corporate branding into our environment by proposing a potentially controversial scenario. Taking the practice to a new extreme by infusing capitalistic concerns into formerly unadulterated areas ultimately confronts the audience with the key question, “How far is too far?” The purpose of this study is to determine whether or not the public finds this treatment of its culture and landscape inappropriate, and if so, where is the line drawn and how can it be enforced?
Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2
Pages (from-to)1-70
Number of pages70
JournalDesign Principles and Practices
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2007


  • branding
  • culture
  • corporations
  • entertainment
  • public
  • social
  • design
  • advertising
  • sponsorship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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