Creating character and emotion with color

Walk around some of the world’s cities and it’s often the colors you see that inspire an emotional connection. Color gives a city energy and character, while our own research has shown that color plays an important role in giving citizens a sense of place and identity.

Harnessing the transformative power of color can therefore help to give cities a new lease of life, while staying true to their origins. As one of the world’s leading paints and coatings companies, we have a long track record of helping cities around the world to add color and preserve their unique identity, typified by our highly successful Color Plans.

Individually designed by our Sikkens brand in partnership with architects, historians, municipal authorities and local people, a Color Plan is essentially a color collection which is typical of a particular city or part of a city. Based on research into an area’s historic use of color going back hundreds of years, the overall aim is to help cities identify, recover and preserve the colors that give them their unique character and appearance.

One of the more recent Color Plans we developed was for Bergamo in Italy. Working in collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Heritage, architects Riccardo Zanetta and Domenico Egizi, as well as the University of Bergamo, a color collection was created which is now being used as one of the key reference points for restoration and exterior redecoration projects.

Our work in Bergamo follows on from Color Plans that have been developed for various Italian and Spanish cities, including Rome, Barcelona, Portofino, Malaga, Naples and Zaragoza. Color collections have also been created for cities in Austria and the Netherlands.