Predating both Central Park and Prospect Park, Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn was one of the most important landscapes of the 19th century, ultimately influencing the rise of public parks and green space in the US. Pentagram’s Abbott Miller has designed A Beautiful Way to Go: New York’s Green-Wood Cemetery, a new exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York that commemorates the 175th anniversary of this national historic landmark. The show opens this week and remains on view through September 15.
Established in 1838 in what was then a rural area of the city, Green-Wood is a bucolic 478-acre landscape of rolling hills, gentle ponds, meandering paths and striking Gothic Revival architecture that was for a time the most popular tourist attraction in the country. Visitors enjoyed the beautiful natural setting and saw the cemetery as a place of repose and relaxation. Green-Wood eventually inspired the design of Central Park and Prospect Park, as well as the creation of the first suburb, Llewelyn Park in New Jersey.
Miller’s exhibition design creates a continuous environmental surface from historic maps of the cemetery. Museum visitors navigate the exhibition encountering objects and stories of Green-Wood’s most famous “residents” that are positioned according to their location within the landscape.
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The 83rd International Geneva Motor Show was a landmark event for Rolls Royce, with the launch of their new Wraith, which the carmaker calls the “most potent and technologically advanced” in its history. Justus Oehler and his team designed the customer experience for their exhibition space, building on his work with the company over the last two years and creating a narrative and a monolithic expression for the brand, encapsulating style and elegance.
The space was multifaceted, featuring a large lounge with a seating and bar area, an atelier, a sales area and glass cabinets with after-sales items. All areas were gathered around a Rolls-Royce car, a focal point in the space. Oehler designed the atelier shelves, with all its original pieces sourced from the Rolls-Royce workshops and factory. He also designed the information graphics and selected the materials needed to develop the overall look and feel of the space, collaborating with Puchner P3 architects based in Munich.
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Quick Link: Natasha Jen’s “Gimme More” Graphics Featured on Designboom
Pentagram’s Natasha Jen designed the identity and environmental graphics for the exhibition Gimme More: Is Augmented Reality the Next Medium?, recently on view at Eyebeam Art+Technology Center in New York. Originally developed by the EPFL+ECAL Lab at the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland, the exhibition showcased seven installations by artists who use augmented reality (AR) to tell stories in new ways. Previous incarnations of the exhibition have been shown in London, Milan, Paris and San Francisco; the New York version was designed in collaboration with SOFTlab and Futureflair, and featured several new works.
Augmented reality is reality with something extra—objects, environments or interactions that have been enhanced with virtual content or storytelling that blurs the line of the physical and digital. Jen’s graphic design for Gimme More plays on this intersection of the material and immaterial, using simple elements of light and shape to create an otherworldly effect that helps introduce visitors to the subject and sets off SOFTlab’s innovative exhibition design.
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It’s not too late to plan a trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see Double Portrait, the first joint exhibition of the work of Pentagram’s Paula Scher and Push Pin’s Seymour Chwast. The show includes more than 300 pieces selected and installed by the creative couple and remains on view through April 14.
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Unveiled for the first time for public viewing is Daniel Weil’s E20 Story Chronoscope, which has been installed in front of More London, by Tower Bridge. The installation will remain in this location until the end of February. Weil created the Chronoscope to celebrate the planners vision for the lower Lea Valley area that hosted the London 2012 Olympic games, and will culminate in the development of neighbourhoods that will weave this previously isolated and empty area into the fabric of the city.
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From abolitionism and women’s suffrage to the struggle for Civil Rights and Occupy Wall Street, New York City has played a crucial role in many of the major social movements that have helped to advance justice in issues related to race, gender, class, work, religion and sexuality. New York is uniquely positioned to foster activism, given the diverse sociological makeup of its communities, its status as a media hub, and its ideological open-mindedness—not to mention the outspoken attitude of its citizens.
Pentagram’s Michael Gericke and his team have designed “Activist New York,” a major exhibition currently on display at the Museum of the City of New York that looks at the city’s remarkable 350-year history as a focal point for activism. The show, the first of its kind, is the inaugural exhibition in the museum’s new Puffin Foundation Gallery, a newly renovated space endowed by the Foundation to explore social movements that have played a significant part in the city’s history.
Gericke and his team worked closely with the exhibition’s curator, Sarah M. Henry, on the design and development of the show. The bold, colorful design is inspired by demonstrations themselves, with exhibition images and messages presented like placards at a protest. These have been grouped in each of the exhibition sections in a way that suggests the visual energy and critical mass of social demonstrations, and are accompanied by historic artifacts and photographs displayed in vitrines.
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Perched on the Pacific Ocean with views of Honolulu’s Diamond Head, Shangri La, the Hawaiian estate of the heiress Doris Duke (1912-1993), is located in an exotic setting. And the home itself is an extraordinary environment, a visionary fantasia that melds a modern sense of form with the tropical landscape and art and decorative elements from throughout the Islamic world. Timed to the centenary of Duke’s birth, Doris Duke’s Shangri La: Architecture, Landscape and Islamic Art is a new exhibition at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York that looks at this unique property and its collections. Pentagram’s Abbott Miller and his team have designed the exhibition and accompanying book, Doris Duke’s Shangri La: A House in Paradise. The show remains on view at MAD through February 17, 2013, before traveling to six museums across the U.S. through 2015.
“Inventive synthesis” is the term the exhibition curators Thomas Mellins and Donald Albrecht have coined to describe Duke’s creation at Shangri La. Built in 1937, the five-acre estate is an interlocking complex of buildings, terraced gardens and pools that incorporates architectural features like carved marble doorways, decorated jali screens, gilt and coffered ceilings, and floral ceramic tiles, along with Islamic art amassed by Duke over the years as she decorated her retreat. Opened to the public since 2002, the complex is now owned and managed by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art and maintains a diverse collection of 2,500 objects spanning from the first millennium B.C. to the 20th century, from Spain to the Philippines.
Miller worked closely with the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art and the curators to develop an exhibition design that captures the spirit of the house. The Shangri La experience is essentially site specific, and the challenge for the designers was creating a context for the historic collection and interiors in a traveling exhibition that could be adapted to various environments. Miller created a modular design that displays artifacts on movable easels and tables, including large-scale backlighted photographs of Shangri La that convey the drama and beauty of the location. The noted architectural photographer Tim Street-Porter was commissioned to create new images of the house and grounds.
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The London 2012 Olympics has been a very public success but behind it lies a less well-known story. Beginning in London’s Lower Lea Valley over thirty years ago, an intelligent piece of urban planning has not only helped to make the Olympics possible but is also going to turn the Olympic Park into a living neighbourhood after
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“Clock for a Film Maker” is the fifth and final clock in “Matter of Time,” a collection of unique timepieces designed by Pentagram’s Daniel Weil.
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