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The design of the exhibition by SITE

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The WilliWear Men’s Showroom, c. 1982.
Photo: Andreas Sterzing

“I don’t design clothes for the queen; but for the people who wave to her when she walks by, ”said fashion designer Willi Smith, who drew many of his best ideas from street life in New York City. His label, WilliWear, was the first streetwear brand, and his clothes, released in the late 1970s, were modern, comfortable, and expressive – think oversized blazers and pants that all body types could wear, chunky knits and fabrics sourced from all over the world. (One of his most popular pieces was a one size fits all cargo pants with adjustable waistband.) Smith often sold models of his designs, so people could make his clothes at home. So, in the early 1980s, when he wanted to open his own showroom, he told James Wines, founder of the architecture and environmental art studio. TO PLACE, to make it “as far away from Ralph Lauren as possible”. Smith took Wines to his favorite haunts on the west side – Christopher St. Pier and nightclubs close – and as they walked around the area, he pointed out all of the materials and textures he loved. Wines thought: Let’s make the street.

Willi Smith (left) designed what he called “democratic” fashion. The streetscape-inspired showroom was a backdrop for the type of clothing he made (right). From left to right : Photo: Courtesy of Kim SteelePhoto: Peter Gould / Courtesy of Fashion Institute of Technology

Willi Smith (left) designed what he called “democratic” fashion. The streetscape-inspired showroom was a backdrop for the type of clothing he …
Willi Smith (left) designed what he called “democratic” fashion. The streetscape-inspired showroom was a backdrop for the type of clothing he made (right). From above: Photo: Courtesy of Kim SteelePhoto: Peter Gould / Courtesy of Fashion Institute of Technology

Under cover of night, Wines drove his Ford Explorer through the same areas Smith took him – which was being redeveloped and highway removal at a breakneck pace – and picked up all the trash he had. could find: rolls of chain link fencing, bricks, metal siding, shipping pallets and even stack cleats. The entirety of Smith’s office – which featured a huge desk that looked like two unfinished brick walls topped with glass – came from a single construction site. Every once in a while, they hit the jackpot: an overturned fire hydrant or a broken lamppost. “We were very careful not to affect public safety, but it was really like a game,” says Wines, whose job it is to abandon architectural conventions. “I like this idea of ​​the unwanted world, because you can do something with it.”

Set foot inside Smith Women’s Showroom, which opened on West 38th Street in 1982, was like stepping into an industrial downtown street, painted entirely in dark gray. The “Ghost cityscape”Was as much an artistic experience as a place to shop for clothes, as Smith intended, and paved the way for concept shops like Dover Street Market and Opening Ceremony. The stores belonged to the same universe for which the clothes were designed. He hung clothes directly on the chain link fences and posed mannequins sitting on concrete blocks, just like a person would on the street. When Smith held fashion shows in showrooms, models climbed fences, hung on pipes, and sat on fire hydrants. “It was an absolute genius to have designed, for the first major boutique of African-American fashion designers, an environmental framework that not only spoke to the designer’s creative vision for clothing, but also defined the man, the woman. politics and the social conditions of the time ”, the architect Jack Travis, writing. “The results were undeniable.

The WilliWear women’s showroom opened in 1982.
Photo: James Wines

So when Cooper Hewitt mounted a retrospective of Smith’s daring career in “Willi Smith: street sewing”, Which is open until October 24, there was no question of who would design the exhibition. It had to be SITE. Alexandra Cunningham Cameron, curator of the exhibition, said: “The SITE and WilliWear collaboration so perfectly represents two complementary value systems that collide to challenge the status quo, both transforming basic materials – a shovel, a skirt , a brick, a blazer – in an act of rebellion, a moment of becoming built by style and intelligence.

SITE traveled to the western part of Manhattan to find materials and inspiration for Smith’s showrooms. Here are some of the photos Wines took on his scouting trips in the 1980s. Photos: Courtesy of James Wines.

SITE traveled to the western part of Manhattan to find materials and inspiration for Smith’s showrooms. Here are some of the photos Wines took during her sc …
SITE traveled to the western part of Manhattan to find materials and inspiration for Smith’s showrooms. Here are some of the photos Wines took on his scouting trips in the 1980s. Photos: Courtesy of James Wines.

An exhibit on Willi Smith had to include his showroom in one way or another. But representing architecture in a gallery setting is always a challenge, as the experience of architecture requires a body in space. The photos, videos or models of a Smith showroom can go no further. So Wines, now 89, worked with Chermayeff Studio, production studio Supermatic, and his daughter Suzan’s wines, to recreate the most iconic elements of Smith’s showrooms and office – the collage of street artifacts, the masonry desk – in the gallery.

But for Wines, there was also an inherent tension in replicating this concept in the museum. “The whole environmental art movement in Soho in the ’70s and’ 80s, which I was a part of, was based on leaving galleries,” says Wines. “Our whole philosophy moved away from all these projectors, brackets, plinths and frames. We are all either in the landscape or in the street. (Some of SITE’s most famous works have been to transform big box retail stores into works of art which made the buildings appear to be collapsing or peeling off.) Plus, Cooper Hewitt is a Georgian mansion that once belonged to Andrew Carnegie. An iconic Upper East Side building is about as far removed as possible from Wines’ philosophy, which rejects architectural formalism, and the aesthetic of downtown Smith. Smith’s showrooms and office were set in large, raw industrial spaces with cement floors, exposed beams, and large windows. The gallery, meanwhile, has parquet floors, ornate carved moldings, coffered ceilings, and stained glass windows. “The idea of ​​exhibition space is a formalization of space,” says Wines. “It became this big problem of … How am I going to keep this in mind? How am I going to honor the artist?

Wines’ conceptual sketches for Cooper Hewitt’s exhibition on Willi Smith represented streetscapes in a state of dematerialization.
Illustration: Courtesy of James Wines

Photo: Matt Flynn / Smithsonian Institution

Part of the appeal of the original exhibit hall was that the artifacts all existed in the city before they were assembled into a recreation of a downtown street. “In the 80s a lot of the energy was related to the harshness and the reality of the whole thing,” says Wines. “We tore up entire facades of buildings and were lucky enough to find all of these jagged buildings, so we had pretty much everything we needed to slip into the showroom and do this freewheeling collage. And Willi loved it, of course, and it was handy because you can hang clothes anywhere.

But SITE couldn’t attach anything to the museum’s wooden walls, or put artifacts directly on the floor, so they designed stand-alone exhibition platforms. In addition, the objects in the exhibition are now all precious. Ephemera like magazine articles, invitations to fashion shows and posters had to be placed in display cases to protect them. Wines was particularly shocked to learn that curators couldn’t always hang clothes directly on the exhibit structure, as Smith would have done in his shop. “How could touching pipes hurt a t-shirt?” »Notes on the wines. (Some of the Smith T-shirts once sold for $ 40 now go for $ 1,400.)

Wines designed a smaller version of Smith’s desk for the exhibit.
Photo: Matt Flynn / Smithsonian Institution

SITE built Smith’s office in 1982 with materials salvaged from a Manhattan construction site.
Photo: James Wines

Wines also couldn’t surreptitiously source materials like they once did at midnight, as those abandoned buildings and demolished piles of materials no longer exist in the city. But Cat Garcia-Menocal, the construction manager at Supermatic, competed over materials from construction suppliers to get closer to what was in the original showroom. It was brand new, of course, not rough from years of wear and tear on the exterior. When it came time to recreate Smith’s site office, the designers scaled it down and used it to display some of his personal items, like his round plastic glasses.

Until the end, Wines wondered how the scenography of the exhibition would unfold. But when he was finally able to visit the exhibit in person (the museum reopened this summer after having to close for COVID just a week after the exhibit began), he was delighted to find that all Georgian adornments were ‘were faded into the background, as he’d hoped, and he felt as close to Smith’s world as he could be in 2021. I felt that, too. Walking from the wood-lined hallway of the museum and rounding the corner of the exhibit was exhilarating. He did not have the exact sense of reality that Wines described as having the original showrooms, but that’s understandable, and there was a feeling of awe. “It still looked like Willi Smith, there was still that sense of bonding,” Wines says. “We managed to do it, so it at least preserves the memory of the showroom.”

Photo: Matt Flynn / Smithsonian Institution

Photo: Matt Flynn / Smithsonian Institution

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Augusta’s First Amendment Museum secures exhibition design grants

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A render shows what the First Amendment Museum should look like once its renovation is complete. Image courtesy of the First Amendment Museum

AUGUSTA – The First Amendment Museum, located in Guy P. Gannett’s former home in Augusta, has won a grant of nearly $ 250,000 to complete the design of what officials say is its cutting-edge exhibit intended to inspire visitors to understand, practice and preserve their First Amendment rights of religion, speech, press, assembly and petition.

The federal $ 249,000 Museums for America grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services will be used to complete the design of the museum’s exhibit, which is slated to be installed as part of a $ 14 million overall restoration and expansion of the building.

The planned interactive exhibit, officials said, will allow visitors to meet, interact with and reflect on their rights by reinforcing the notion that citizens use and engage with the freedoms protected by the First Amendment. Each room in the museum will interpret a particular aspect of the First Amendment. A dystopian kitchen will show what life could be like in a society without the First Amendment, a “Censorship Library” will highlight books, movies and music that have been banned, a teenage bedroom will explore the discourse of youth and social media, and an exercise The Room will “engage kinesthetic learners,” according to a press release.

“This major grant will help us create a unique, interactive and relevant visitor experience” Co-founder of Genie Gannett and Chairman of the Board, and a granddaughter of Guy Gannett, said in the statement.

The non-partisan the museum is already open, with temporary exhibitions and guided interactive tours focused on the First Amendment and the five freedoms it protects: religion, speech, press, meeting and petition. Admission is free and the museum, located at 184 State St. next to Blaine House, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and, until September 4, Saturday.

Deborah Williams, director of outreach engagement for the First Amendment Museum, said on Monday that the exhibit will be worked on alongside the physical restoration and expansion of the 1911 building, which will likely begin next year with the aim of open the new exhibit at the end of 2023 or early 2024..

The exhibition will be created by the designer Helen Riegle of HER Design in Boston, whose portfolio includes “Dear Boston: Messages from the Marathon Memorial” from the Boston Public Library, “A Whole New Game” from the National Baseball Hall of Fame and “America on The Move” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

“The museum exhibits will show how Americans have used their First Amendment rights as a tool to move our society forward and to create that ‘more perfect union’ which is our civic burden,” said Christian Cotz, Managing Director of the museum. “But perhaps more importantly, these dynamic, stimulating and interactive exhibits will inspire people to live their freedoms and exercise their rights more intentionally and effectively.”

A fundraising campaign to fund the project is in its early stages, according to Jamie O’Brien, Director of Development. Donations can be made through the museum’s website.

The expansion will double the size of the facility and will be attached to the rear of the building.

Guy Gannett and his family lived in the house for about 10 years before moving to Portland when the publishing company he founded with his father purchased the Portland Press Herald. The Gannett Publishing Co. also owned the Waterville Sentinel, the Portland (Maine) Sunday Telegram, the Portland Evening Express and the Daily Kennebec Journal. They later expanded to broadcast media, but sold the company in 1998.


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Augusta’s First Amendment Museum secures exhibition design grants

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A render shows what the First Amendment Museum should look like once its renovation is complete. Image courtesy of the First Amendment Museum

AUGUSTA – The First Amendment Museum, located in Guy P. Gannett’s former home in Augusta, won a grant of nearly $ 250,000 to complete the design of what officials say is his cutting-edge exhibit intended to inspire visitors to understand, practice and preserve their First Amendment rights to religion, speech, press, assembly and petition.

The federal $ 249,000 Museums for America grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services will be used to complete the design of the museum’s exhibit, which is slated to be installed as part of a $ 14 million overall restoration and expansion of the building.

The planned interactive exhibit, officials said, will allow visitors to meet, interact with and reflect on their rights by reinforcing the notion that citizens use and engage with the freedoms protected by the First Amendment. Each room in the museum will interpret a particular aspect of the First Amendment. A dystopian kitchen will show what life could be like in a society without the First Amendment, a “Censorship Library” will highlight books, movies and music that have been banned, a teenage bedroom will explore the discourse of youth and social media, and an exercise The Room will “engage kinesthetic learners,” according to a press release.

“This major grant will help us create a unique, interactive and relevant visitor experience” Co-founder of Genie Gannett and Chairman of the Board, and a granddaughter of Guy Gannett, said in the statement.

The non-partisan the museum is already open, with temporary exhibitions and guided interactive tours focused on the First Amendment and the five freedoms it protects: religion, speech, press, meeting and petition. Admission is free and the museum, located at 184 State St. next to Blaine House, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and, until September 4, Saturday.

Deborah Williams, director of outreach engagement for the First Amendment Museum, said on Monday that the exhibit will be worked on alongside the physical restoration and expansion of the 1911 building, which will likely begin next year with the aim of open the new exhibit at the end of 2023 or early 2024..

The exhibition will be created by the designer Helen Riegle of HER Design in Boston, whose portfolio includes “Dear Boston: Messages from the Marathon Memorial” from the Boston Public Library, “A Whole New Game” from the National Baseball Hall of Fame and “America on The Move” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

“The museum exhibits will show how Americans have used their First Amendment rights as a tool to move our society forward and to create that ‘more perfect union’ which is our civic burden,” said Christian Cotz, Managing Director of the museum. “But perhaps more importantly, these dynamic, stimulating and interactive exhibits will inspire people to live their freedoms and exercise their rights more intentionally and effectively.”

A fundraising campaign to fund the project is in its early stages, according to Jamie O’Brien, Director of Development. Donations can be made through the museum’s website.

The expansion will double the size of the facility and will be attached to the rear of the building.

Guy Gannett and his family lived in the house for about 10 years before moving to Portland when the publishing company he founded with his father purchased the Portland Press Herald. The Gannett Publishing Co. also owned the Waterville Sentinel, the Portland (Maine) Sunday Telegram, the Portland Evening Express and the Daily Kennebec Journal. They later expanded to broadcast media, but sold the company in 1998.


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Mather & Cie | exhibition design partner for Inverness Castle

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Mather & Cie, one of the leading consultants in tourist attractions and exhibition design, was announced by the Highland Council as the successful exhibition designer for the project to transform Inverness Castle into a world-class tourist attraction.

Since its establishment in 1995, the company has worked on the design of many popular and successful exhibitions, tourist attractions, tours and museums around the world. With 25 years of experience in the industry, Mather & Co is able to come up with new and innovative ways to tell stories, engage visitors and attract new audiences.

Previous projects include Downton Abbey: the exhibition; The ultimate ride to the Silverstone experience; The experience of the Royal Mint; and the R&A World of Golf Museum in St Andrews.

Chris Mather, CEO, Mather & Co; Fiona Hampton, Director, Inverness Castle; Sarah Clarke, Managing Director, Mather & Co. inside the entrance to Inverness Castle. Image credit: Ewen Weatherspoon

Transform Inverness Castle

Mather & Co will bring this rich experience to the transformation of Inverness Castle and to the development of the “Spirit of the Highlands” project. Their approach will take into account the entire visitor experience, including what people see and interact with before, during and after their visit. The project will ensure that everyone who visits the castle has a memorable time and will want to visit it again in the future.

Celebrating and interpreting “the spirit of the highlands” in 100 stories will be the central theme of the visitor experience. The tender invited the successful company to develop and explore this theme in imaginative and unexpected ways, encouraging people to visit other places around the Highlands.

“The appointment of Mather & Co as exhibition designers for the project is an important step in the transformation of Inverness Castle”, states Fergus ewing MSP, co-chair of the Inverness Castle Delivery Group.

“Their vast experience across a diverse range of tourist attractions across the world will be a welcome contribution to the development of the castle as a gateway to Highland tourism, as well as a place that locals and visitors alike will have. looking forward to visiting again and again. “

Chris mather, CEO of Mather & Co, adds: “We are delighted to be part of the project team and start by creating a first class and compelling attraction – showcasing the rich heritage of the Highlands and Islands and the castle itself. -same “

Inverness Castle Project
Image credit LDN Architects srl

A world-class tourist attraction for the Highlands

High Life Highland is the managing agent of the Highland Council in the project to transform Inverness Castle into a tourist attraction for the Highlands. The transformation of Inverness Castle is supported by an investment of £ 15million from the Scottish government and £ 3million from the UK government as part of the Inverness and Highlands area agreement.

The project aims to create a gateway for Highland tourism, helping to revitalize tourism across the region and provide investment to the industry as it recovers from the pandemic. It will support economic growth throughout the Highland region, creating a long-lasting must-see attraction celebrating the spirit of the Highlands.

The Inverness and Highland City Region Agreement is a joint initiative supported by an investment of up to £ 315million from the UK and Scottish governments, the Highland Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the University of the Highlands and Islands, aimed at to stimulate sustainable regional economic growth.

Mather & Co is a experienced multidisciplinary design consultancy based in Chesire, UK. It offers a flexible and adaptable service, adapted to the needs of each client.

Top image credits LDN Architects srl

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Exhibition Design Internship – New York, NY, US | Works

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The Whitney is paid Fall internship of the academic year program offers a one-semester internship for undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled in an accredited academic program. For fall 2021, interns will commit 16 to 21 hours per week for 10 to 12 weeks for a total of 200 hours. The decision of whether the internship will be virtual or hybrid has not been determined.

Please review department descriptions and refer to the list of departments requesting interns on the Application tab – not all departments will accept interns for the fall semester.

Strong points:

  • Allowance of $ 3,000 (requirement of 200 hours for the semester)
  • Interns are assigned to a specific department of the museum for the duration
  • Monthly lecture series featuring museum professionals from across the Museum
  • Interns are eligible for course credit

Qualifications:

  • Undergraduates and graduates currently enrolled in accredited university programs are eligible.
  • Applicants must have completed a minimum of two years of academic courses. First year students are not eligible.
  • Some positions may require university level training and / or work experience, noted in department descriptions.
  • While a demonstrated interest in art and art history is preferred, students of all majors are encouraged to apply.
  • Previous museum experience is not required.

Instructions for application

  • TO RESUME Use the following naming convention when uploading your CV: LAST NAME_FIRST NAME_RESUME.pdf
  • COVER LETTER Think about how Whitney’s mission relates to your background and life experience, explain your reasons for applying to the internship program, and describe what you hope to gain from this experience.
  • GRAPHIC DESIGN Wallet is required. Please download to the app.
  • To apply, please complete a form located on the Museum’s website: https://whitney.org/About/JobPostings

The submission deadline is: August 16, 2021, and the internship will start the week of September 27, 2021.

Specific to the department:

Projects / work assignments:

The trainee of the exhibition design department will provide support in the design of exhibitions at different stages of planning:

  • Interns will participate in departmental design carts and meetings with exhibition curators to review design concepts and artistic layouts, as well as planning meetings involving colleagues from across the institution (via Zoom and in person)
  • Interns will also help create artistic layouts, scale mockups of the artwork, study models, large scale mockups and presentation materials.
  • Whenever possible, trainees will observe and assist on the ground during construction and installation.

Skills and qualifications required, including technological skills:

  • Enrolled in a related architecture or design program
  • 2D drawing skills, preferably Vectorworks, 3D modeling skills, preferably Rhino and V-Ray, and proficiency in Adobe Suite.
  • Ease with the construction of study and finishing models
  • Ability to think abstractly and creatively
  • Attention to detail
  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to work in a flexible and fast-paced environment on concurrent projects
  • When applying, applicants must provide a link to their design portfolio

Training to be provided:

  • Trainees will be exposed to the process of making exhibitions from concept to installation and the role of exhibition design in this process.
  • Interns will work alongside designers and curators to develop the narrative and environment of an exhibition.
  • Interns will learn the tools designers use to communicate spatial and conceptual ideas to curators and the institution as a whole. This includes training in developing scale models of the artwork, working with architectural models from the exhibition, developing larger scale models, developing architectural drawings, and critically examining the art. artistic layout in terms of conservation narrative.

Results:

  • Learn the skills to help assess art checklists, develop three-dimensional thinking with 2D and 3D work, learn the fundamentals of exhibition design planning.
  • Gain insight into how a large museum of this stature works and how other departments affect the design of an exhibit.

About the Whitney

The Whitney Museum of American Art, founded in 1930 by artist and philanthropist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, houses the largest collection of American art of the 20th and 21st centuries. From his vision was born the Whitney Museum of American Art, which has championed America’s most innovative art for 86 years. The heart of The Whitney’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret and exhibit the American art of our time and to serve a wide range of audiences to celebrate the complexity and diversity of art and culture in the United States. . Through this mission and an unwavering commitment to the artists themselves, the Whitney has long been a powerful force for modern and contemporary art and continues to help define what is innovative and influential in art. American today.

TEE declaration

The Whitney Museum of American Art is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The Museum does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, religion, race, color, creed, national origin, alienation or citizenship, disability, marital status, partner status, veteran status, sex (including gender identity), sexual orientation or any other factor prohibited by law. The Museum hires and promotes people solely on the basis of their qualifications for the position to be filled. The Museum encourages all qualified applicants to apply for vacancies at all levels. This description should not be interpreted as a contract of any kind for a specific period of employment.

Manual :

To apply, please complete a form located on the Museum’s website: https://whitney.org/About/JobPostings


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studio 10 adorns design of ‘shaped from nature’ exhibition in china with transparent elements

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Studio 10 completed the spatial design for the “Made from Nature” exhibition, hosted by the Sea World Culture and Arts Center in Shenzhen, China. co-organized by the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A), the China Silk Museum, the Design Society and guest curator Edith Cheung, the exhibition consists of two sections to tell the complex relationship between fashion and nature since the 16th century. century, with reflections like as well as the emphasis on sensitivity and preservation of the environment, in Western and Eastern societies.

all courtesy images chao zhang

with nature as the subject and the garden as the theme, the design of workshop 10 forms an abstract but poetic interpretation and comparison of eastern and western views of nature, as well as the evolution of classic to contemporary garden spaces. the first section of the exhibition is titled ‘Shaped from Nature’, focusing on the correlation between fashion and nature from the 16th century to the present day, while the second section, titled ‘Shaped from Nature’ nature in China: yesterday and today ”is an echo of the subject in the east.

studio 10 completes the exhibition

in this newly developed design, studio 10 hoped ‘explore the similarities and differences of the natural views embodied in eastern and western gardens’. with this in mind, the entrance arch is clad in tyvek which, when backlit, faintly reveals the vine-like fibers and forms an abstract ‘green corridor’. through this corridor, guests can access the first section of the exhibition, housing the classical period of the English section. translucent fabrics are used to create a classic abstract “western” garden, which is very geometric, axially symmetrical and perspective-oriented while connecting circular spaces and display cases of different sizes.

studio 10 completes the exhibition

then comes the last ‘garden’, formed from a set of acrylic tubes – the modern material implies that the narrative of the exhibition approaches modernity, when people began to contemplate and reflect on the relationship between fashion and nature. here the layout takes a more contemporary approach, the space instantly opens up, from classic confined circular storefronts to a continuous and flowing display area, echoing the flexible layout of the contemporary landscape and spatial design.

studio 10 completes the exhibition

the Chinese section serves as the final part of the exhibition, taking the form of a pill-shaped plane surrounded by translucent fabric, leaving only a slit for entry. visitors can vaguely see as they stroll through this space, while curiosity builds up. in this section, the design follows a natural approach – there is no fixed axis or linear flow. a translucent ramp settles inside, just like a mountain path or a stream winding from the sky, free and winding. mannequins dressed in highlighted pieces are placed on the ramp as if they were descending a hill.

studio 10 completes the exhibition

throughout the exhibition, visitors can explore the space intuitively and freely, as if they were in a natural setting. the design uses light and translucent materials such as fabric, TPU, tyvek, etc. to weaken the interposition of physical space and the existence of the entity. expressing the abstract and poetic views of the eastern and western, classical and modern garden through ’emptiness’ and ‘transparency’, the architects intend to encourage visitors to reflect and reflect on the relationship between man and nature, from a fashion point of view as well as a broader perspective.

studio 10 completes the exhibition

transparent elements adorn the design of the exhibition

transparent elements adorn the design of the exhibition

transparent elements adorn the design of the exhibition

spatial design of the exhibition shaped from nature organized by va and design society 7

spatial design of the exhibition shaped from nature curated by va and design society 8

spatial design of the exhibition shaped from nature organized by va and design society 12

project info:

Name: exhibition “shaped from nature”

conservative: design company, victoria & albert museum (v & a), china silk museum

guest curator: Edith cheung

design consultant: workshop 10

main responsible: shi zhou

design team: cristina moreno cabello, an huang, jiaying huang, meishi zhao, xin zheng, jiaxiao bao (project assistant), feifei chen (project assistant)

graphic design consultant: sanyi_lab

construction drawing consultant: shennan design

lighting consultant: jojo lighting

site: cultural and artistic center of the world of the sea, main location L1, 1187 wanghai road, shekou, nanshan, shenzhen, china

Region: 1280 m² (13778 ft²)

designboom received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘, where we invite our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

edited by: myrto katsikopoulou | design boom

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Design in 2021 – what will exhibition design look like?

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What do you think 2021 will hold for exhibition design?

What a roller coaster year 2020 for exhibition design! With many museums closed for much of the year and needing to put staff on leave, many short and long term projects have postponed openings. As a result, many institutions and design agencies have taken the time to completely rethink the future – and on many levels. The pandemic has impacted in so many different ways, from budgets and deadlines to new sensitivities and perspectives and the more practical issues of visitor travel, including the implications of touch and the importance of travel lanes.

As we move forward now, I think the appetite for exhibitions will follow different paths. On the one hand, we’ll see some really exciting installations that come and go in a flash. Inexpensive exhibitions to set up and embodying creative and free-thinking solutions, making maximum use of light and the audiovisual sector.

On the other hand, we will see beautifully designed, clean, and material-rich displays that are highly regarded. I think the exhibits will become immensely popular as we come out of the pandemic. I predict an explosion of creativity too. People are so hungry for exciting ‘real’ things that embody value and craftsmanship, as well as new and empowering designs, especially after the lack of experiential 3D cultivation in our home-confined, life-based existence. the screen of recent times. I also believe that there will be a significantly increased engagement in exhibition design for sustainable materials and more flexible, modular and reusable designs.

I can’t wait to see what will happen in 2021.

What is your favorite example of exhibition design from 2020 and why?

The year was thus divided between the pre-containment exposures in January and February and what followed.

Earlier this year, I just managed to see a big exhibition called Sense Me at the Trapholt Museum of Modern Art in Kolding, Denmark. It was a wonderful sensory journey, with textured curtains in which you could walk around and experience effects; a responsive digital box that you can walk in and create moving images and a room full of curved wooden trees that emit sounds with a disorienting and distorting mirror, as well as a cloud that you can gaze into at the top of a ladder (photo above). It was a brilliant and immersive experience that seemed all the more impressive as nothing like it was possible for the rest of the year and beyond.

We are currently designing an exhibition on touch at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, which opens this month and whose subject matter will have an entirely different resonance after Covid, which was completely unforeseen during the conception of the exhibition.

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The five biggest exhibition design stories of 2020

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In a year when many cultural institutions were closed, exhibition designers had to adapt and often bring the museum experience into our own homes.

Non-Pavilion, a VR installation at the V&A for last year’s London Design Festival

How would the hard-hit exhibition industry return after the first lockdown? The Design Museum’s flagship exhibit, Electronic: From Kraftwerk to The Chemical Brothers, was set up before the lockdown and its organizers revealed to Design Week how it was adjusted accordingly. In addition to the obligatory masks and hand sanitizer stations, the capacity of the bikes had been doubled so that people did not have to take public transport and the capacity was cut in half (the museum had to open late to fill a lack of ticket sales).

Beyond the immediate changes, we wondered how exhibition design could evolve in the long term. Nissen Richards studio director Pippa Nissen told Design Week Covid could start a ‘digital revolution’ in exhibition spaces with the rise of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). She also noted that there might be a shift towards an (even more) more organized experience, driven by how people might experience confined spaces differently. Future exhibits could be about “experiencing someone’s pre-designed experience” with less choice on the part of the visitor.

Materials would be another focus. “We can’t waste so much anymore,” Nissen said. Not only should the materials be more durable, but they should be more adaptable (to change social distancing rules and future plans). It was a trend echoed at Milan’s Salone Del Mobile – which we attended the preview just before the lockdown and its possible postponement – where the focus was on reusable exhibition displays.


The Chemical Brothers experiment, designed by Smith & Lyall

When it finally opened, Design Week saw a relatively quiet preview of the Design Museum’s successful exhibition on the history of electronic music. A transfer from Paris, Electronic: From Kraftwerk to The Chemical Brothers took turn-of-the-century visitors and ‘mad sound scientists’ to the Chicago house scene and also to Manchester where the graphic work of Ben Kelly and Peter Saville for the Haçienda club is displayed.

Perhaps most striking in the exhibit was the three lights and sounds installation which would have been particularly well received by all visitors missing the city’s closed club scene. Kraftwerk’s 3D experience was akin to a high-level music video, displaying music from the band’s eight albums. Architecture 1024’s large-scale moving light display was set to the soundtrack of French DJ Laurent Garnier.

The final room belonged to Got to Keep On, a 2019 play by the Chemical Brothers and showmakers Smith & Lyall. The room featured strobe light and smoke effects and shape-shifting 3D visuals. It summed up what Smith & Lyall called the “transformative power of music, art and design”.


Courtesy of the Trustees of the British Museum

As in many sectors, museums and galleries have focused this year on digital. When people couldn’t go out, the best way to reach them was at home. In the spring, the British Museum launched what it called one of the “most comprehensive online museum collections databases” in the world. Some 4 million objects have been made available for viewing online. The curation, however, has not been abolished. Themes were launched in conjunction with the exhibits, such as Love and Identity, which sought to provide an organized experience for people, told us Michael Tame, head of the museum’s digital program.

Across the industry, efforts have been made to improve online accessibility during the lockdown. For example, the Royal Academy has created a 38-minute online tour of its Picasso and Paper exhibition. It wasn’t unprecedented – Google once helped institutions like the National Gallery in London and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to create virtual tours – but there was now a bigger push.

AR Acute Art Platform – interviewed by Design Week at the start of the year – has also expanded its offer with a new application that puts the user in the position of exhibition curator. Designed in-house, the app uses phone cameras to place facilities in people’s homes. He was accompanied by a few renowned collaborators: Jeff Koons, Marina Abramovic and Ai Weiwei.


Paramount by Konstantin Grcic for Toy Poodle. Photo: Hiroshi Yoda.

Man’s best friend was the focus of a design-led exhibition at Japan House in London this summer. “The human engineering approach is a vision of creating the environment that uses the human body as a criterion,” explained Hara Kenya, chief creative advisor at Japan House. “However, look at a small dog next to its owner and you begin to see the potential for a new type of architecture.”

16 architects and designers from around the world produced work for the playful exhibition, attracting Japanese architect Kengo Kuma. Among the collection of beds, toys and activities was a poodle-specific piece by German industrial designer Konstantin Grcic. Paramount was a mirrored structure that aimed to appeal to the breed known to love its own reflection.

Japanese architect Kazuyo Sejima was inspired by the characteristics of his subject himself. Mimicking the fluffy coat of the Bichon Frize, he created a “cotton candy cocoon” where the breed could relax in comfort and style.


The V&A Alice in Wonderland exhibit was scheduled to open this summer. When the exhibit was postponed until next year, the museum turned to London-based game studio Preloaded to create VR sets for those who wish to visit the fantastic world of Lewis Carroll.

While the original plan was to have a 4-minute experience at the exhibit itself, that ambition grew during lockdown to become a home-based virtual reality experience. The studio also developed a centerpiece for the exhibition preview in October. The experience took people to the Queen of Hearts Garden and the Hall of Doors, incorporating visual tricks – such as the change of scale – throughout. The world consisted of vivid hand-drawn visuals, with illustrations by Icelandic artist Kristjana S. Williams.

Virtual reality opens up possibilities for the exhibition experience, Preloaded associate creative director Jon Caplin told us. “Not being held back by the physical world means you can completely change the environment, in color and scale,” he added, while noting that it could be experienced in the comfort of people’s bedrooms. . In an age of social distancing, this could be a useful avenue for museums and galleries to explore – although that of course means investing in a VR headset, added Caplin.

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Exhibition design in the post-covid era

By Exhibition design No Comments

Being in a closed art gallery could make anyone paranoid during a pandemic. Visitors who brave the risk of leaving their homes may still doubt whether they are in a crowded space, people standing too close to them, or be skeptical of air circulation in museums. The spectrum of control exercised by people who frequent an indoor art museum varies greatly from the experience of visiting an outdoor botanical garden. How to give visitors more space to enjoy the works in complete safety? The field of exhibit design is expanding to meet these evolving challenges that will likely persist well beyond a vaccine solution against COVID-19.

Exhibits take years to prepare. While some exhibitions dealing with permanent collectibles have more flexibility, other exhibitions with works on loan from private collectors or other artistic institutions are more complicated. They require extensive agreements, insurance, and usually a courier to get them back and forth between spaces. When COVID restrictions started hitting museums last spring, it turned the exhibition programs of most museums upside down. Not only have they had to rethink, postpone or cancel entire exhibitions, but they have also had to rethink their current galleries to allow for greater social distancing.

When many museums only allow 25% capacity, how visitors interact with the space becomes increasingly important. Avoiding bottlenecks and consolidations is a major concern. What does this mean for interpretation and museum experience? Visitors are likely to see fewer labels. The text on the wall can bring groups of people together to read it. It will take more work from guests to educate themselves with brochures or visit the website for more background on the artwork before their visit. Videos and other materials that enhance the visitor experience will become simpler, shorter, or only available online.

Exhibition design will likely continue to evolve into a “less is more” approach. More artwork will be removed from checklists to leave extra space between objects and viewers. The galleries will therefore appear larger and more open. Based on neuroscience research from Peabody Essex Museum of Art, we know that visitors tend to spend much more time viewing individual works of art earlier in the exhibits than at the end. Less work and more space will allow visitors to better pace themselves and enjoy the rooms without being overwhelmed or crowded.

A debated point in the design of an exhibition is whether there should be one way to experience an art exhibition if there is to be multiple routes. Most museums’ post-pandemic protocols have a “one-way, one-way” system to guide human trafficking. Some believe that this is a less efficient way to deal with crowds and that the more people in and out of a space, the better it is for visitors. However, studies from the Peabody Essex Museum have also found that when museum visitors see an exit sign, they tend to spend less time interested in art and have a sense of urgency to leave.

COVID-19 will undoubtedly affect the way museums are built and renovated for decades to come. It will be highly preferable to have flexible gallery spaces where walls can be removed or auditoriums with seating that can be reconfigured. Bringing the outdoors into artistic institutions, a push that began long before the pandemic, will become a priority. Outdoor cafes and illuminated glass corridors will gradually become the new standard for museums around the world. Gift shops might even become mini-museums themselves, where touching is a thing of the past, and where you navigate to shop.

Condensing an exhibition’s message with fewer works of art, text, and interpretive elements can allow visitors a safe museum experience, but it offers a more diluted way of interacting with the art. Less accessible information and little or no tactile elements also make visits less rich and less memorable. While it is important to consider how to create the adaptable viewing experience possible, it is equally important to ensure that we don’t lose valuable content and to continue to find new ways of connecting people and the world. ‘art.

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Now is the time to see the Costume Institute’s new exhibit design

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Yesterday, the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art held its press preview for “About time: mode and duration. “As was noted repeatedly throughout the proceedings, the show’s management had no way of predicting how puny that puny title would turn out to be in 2020. Initially, the show, which is focusing on the concept of time in fashion and specifically uses Henri Bergson’s concept of duration as a framework, had a fairly dual meaning thanks to the fact that it coincides with the 150th anniversary of the Met. But now, with its closely postponed spring opening seven months due to the coronavirus pandemic and the United States in a suspended state of anxiety, it is truly time for museum visitors to have the opportunity to let themselves be carried away by the beautifully constructed and intellectually stimulating pieces of clothing.

Of course, thanks to all the museums in New York reduced capacity and clearly low number of participants, not as many people will see this show compared to its successful predecessors. The exhibition was curated as usual by Wendy Yu curator Andrew Bolton. It is made possible by Condé Nast and Louis Vuitton, whose artistic director Nicolas Ghesquière contributed curatorial ideas and pieces he had designed to Bolton’s efforts. The show features a narrated soundtrack from the lines of Virginia Woolf that almost seems to merge the aural elements of the 2012 “Schiaparelli and Prada: impossible conversations“with last year’s literary foundation”Camp: Fashion Notes. “Bolton’s emphasis on a non-linear timeline is just as cerebral as the latter shows, while the fact that (virtually) all of the clothing included is black will undoubtedly be reminiscent of some of the works included in 2017.”Rei Kawakubo / Comme des Garçons Art of the In-Between”And the lesser-known fall 2014 show on mourning outfits,“Death becomes her. ”

The first clock made by Devlin. While the press preview of the exhibition took place on Monday, the show opens to the public on Thursday, October 29.

Photo: Anna-Marie Kellen

The black color scheme sets a somewhat subdued tone that also seems appropriate in light of current events. That, and the fact that the vast majority of the pieces included are from the Costume Institute’s own collection, may not attract the interest of potential visitors in the way that stars like a gold dress by Guo Pei have in the past, but this allows the scenography of the exhibition to shine all the more.

Led by artist Es Devlin, it does indeed make good use of lights. But the main attraction is its structure, which mirrors that of two giant clocks. Divided into 60 “minutes”, each increment contains a pair of clothes that clearly communicate with each other. Speaking at the press premiere, Devlin said she seeks to help viewers “understand these expansions and contractions” of the female form, as well as how this architecture moves and transmutes. through the different stages of life. Clearly, a laudable goal for any visitor, but especially for those who work in the design industry themselves.

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