Introducing the new brand identity of karpatkey

We think that the global economic system will eventually be run on top of DeFi.

In order for this trustless ecosystem to thrive, it’s imperative that governance models around DeFi protocols follow their own ethos of transparency. We think they should be akin to coordination mechanisms for basic infrastructure provision: they should be credible-fair and censorship resistant, so traits like predictability, robustness, and neutrality should be valued above efficiency. We think DeFi should be run by DAOs.

karpatkey’s mission is to support DAOs into perpetuity by helping them to preserve capital through low-risk and trust-minimised DeFi treasury execution. In line with this, we joined forces between keen studio and karpatkey to create a radical and straightforward visual language and set the first stone of the brand.

karpatkey is all about trustworthiness. To illustrate this, we tried to capture the immutability, decentralisation, and transparency that blockchain technology provides—hallmarks of a secure organisation for the community. On the other hand, we’ve always cherished a low-profile and functional approach to the industry, so traits like simplicity, moderation, and gentleness always came natural to us.

That’s why we picked the Monospaced Plex Sans, an open-source font with a techy feel that is both recognisable and highly legible. We used it for the logo (lowercase for a balanced and sober aesthetic) and for title text, fitting into the old tradition of financial and research institutions’ typographical approach. For body text, we used the sans version to maximise the legibility.

The font: IBM Plex Mono and Sans
The font: IBM Plex Mono and Sans

This is also reinforced with a stark black and white palette that serves both a practical purpose (it is timeless and versatile) as well as an aesthetic one (it emphasises minimalism). We wanted to create a memorable yet understated look that could be used by any one in any context.

The colors: black and white
The colors: black and white

Generative visuals are also an important part of its branding as they emphasise its connection with web3 ecosystem protocols. By utilising fractal space filling curves in their visuals, we draw attention to their connection with mathematics—a scientific discipline that serves as a foundation for our daily practice.

A fractal space filling curve
A fractal space filling curve

These patterns are also a reminder of the complex and chaotic nature of financial systems. Their behaviour has both systemic and random components—which makes them impossible to model with precision—and that’s why karpatkey never engages in trading.

Keeping our brand elements simple also encourages scalability and allows us to make the most out of them by iterating over time on a variety of media. Not only do we benefit from its aesthetic appeal, but minimalism also streamlines use for a wide variety of materials: building an inclusive culture with accessible assets and document templates on Google Workspace so everyone can put their own spin on it.

karpatkey’s new brand identity sets an example for web3 projects by embodying the values we believe in, which ultimately forged the ecosystem. From the colour scheme choice to the selection of an open source font to its use of generative visuals, each element has been carefully chosen in order to create a consistent visual language that reflects these values while communicating karpatkey’s commitment.

Ultimately, our goal is to provide a strong foundation for us not just as an organisation but also as part of a larger community that allows us to grow together.

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