Migrant solidarity

Developed as a pro-bono project in response to an open call by the New Sanctuary Coalition, this visual system uses a simple image of heart and home as the core of an extensible program designed to to convey the principles and politics of the Sanctuary movement. While notions of the physical space of home can be complicated by antagonistic domestic and/or political circumstances the icon-like shape here is intended as a rapid project response for a mark that embodies a notion of compassionate shelter and doubles as a visual sign for actual sanctuary spaces and for the allies who can help direct vulnerable individuals to safe spaces.

The heart/home mark is an assertive image that can also be more than a beacon for the persecuted, it can also be a banner for dissent. It’s modular design allows adaption for use across a range and scale of applications including stickers, banners, signs, clothing and accessories; all of which can become vehicles for conveying the principles and politics of the Sanctuary project. The mark is clear and legible regardless of language, however the system also includes options for multilingual applications and could easily be adapted to the language needs of local communities.

The image of home and heart is aligned to the idea of sanctuary as the kind of radical welcome practiced by faith-based communities that take an activist approach to their beliefs. One recent visible expression of this was in the words of Pope Francis who said “suspicion and prejudice conflict with the biblical commandment of welcoming with respect and solidarity the stranger in need.”

This project operates from the position that the radical welcome is rooted in defiance of one’s sense of personal vulnerability vis-a-vis fear of ‘the other’. That defiance is actualized by exposing ourselves to the deeper humanity that can be realized through acting with compassion.


new sanctuary coalition
designer: john schettino

  • visual identity
  • application overview
  • position narrative