The Visit Malaysia Year 2020 campaign was recently launched at the Asean Tourism Forum in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and with it the official logo was also unveiled.
The colourful logo drew plenty of backlash from netizens, but the way Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz views it, there is no such thing as bad publicity.
“In fact, it has created an awareness among Malaysians about Visit Malaysia Year 2020,” he said in a phone interview, adding that those who were previously oblivious to the campaign now know about it.
Taking after the shape of a postage stamp, the logo features the Petronas Twin Towers, an orangutan hugging a proboscis monkey and a turtle on a beach … all donning sunglasses.
It bears the tag line: Travel. Enjoy. Respect.
Nazri insisted that “not a single sen” was spent as an in-house design department was responsible for the concept and creation of the logo.
“At the end of the day, I had to make a decision and I stand by what my staff has created,” he said.
When asked how the new logo will boost Malaysia’s tourism growth, Nazri said it was only a “small part of our promotion”.
“The bigger part will be promoting the destinations that we have and to create awareness among people,” he said. He shared that support from restaurants and hotels are also imperative in driving the local tourism scene.
Since the unveiling, some local graphic designers have taken it upon themselves to re-design the logo, and posting them online. Some were even featured on popular Facebook pages and gone viral for their unique and vibrant designs.
On his part, Nazri said he has yet to see any of these efforts.
“It’s a free country,” he said, alluding to the alternative designs that have cropped up online.
We rounded up some of the new logos online and contacted the designers for their take on their creation.
Muhammad Nazhif Mohd Tarmizi
With a hornbill perching atop a tropical-inspired “2020” digits, this logo embodies Malaysia’s treasure trove of beautiful flora and unique fauna. But the way Muhammad Nazhif calls it, he just hopes to reflect Malaysian culture with his design.
Taking cue from Malaysian elements, Ahmad Fazrin incorporates the national flower, the hibiscus, batik as well as the hornbill in his design. Iconic buildings such as the Petronas Twin Towers and KL Tower are also featured.
Wong Yu Han
It was in the name of fun that Wong decided to spend all of 20 minutes working on this design. While on it, he thought we would make it as vibrant and colourful as possible to give off that tourist-y vibe.
When it comes to seeking inspiration, Rasydan turned to the “pucuk rebung” for the foundation of his logo. It’s also one of the Malay traditional motives, he said of his creation that features the iconic Petronas Twin Towers.
Architectural designer Atira’s logo was a quick and intuitive design exercise to highlight the natural elements of Malaysia as an exotic tropical paradise and ultimate travel destination. She said the bright colours resonate with Malaysia’s harmonious cultural diversity and symbolises playfulness and joy.
The year 2020 strikes notions of modernity for Norkhalis, hence the futuristic design of his logo. He said the “2020” digits are inspired by the MRT to symbolise the country’s fast trajectory into the future and beyond.
Muhammad Nur Atiiq Azman
Believing that a good tourism logo could promote a country more effectively, Muhammad Nur Atiiq included elements that represent Malaysia in this day and age. Mount Kinabalu, Petronas Twin Towers, wau bulan and the rafflesia are all displayed prominently in his creation.