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Interactive Annual 13:

MoMA: Eye on Europe

Launch Live Site

“The design of this site is respectful of the works it represents. I’ll go so far as tosay that it also manages to become a part of the exhibition.” —Vas Sloutchevsky

“It’s engaging, well-organized, beautiful, functional and easy to figure out and explore.” —Liz Castro


Overview: A dual Web site and kiosk project for a Museum of Modern Art exhibition, Eye on Europe draws its inspiration from the layout of 1960s era broadsheet newspapers. Each work appears as a headline and article, giving users an almost tactile way to navigate through the featured books, prints and multiples.

  • 150 featured artworks
  • 200 artist and publisher biographies
  • Flash 8 with XML content feeds

Creator’s Comments: “Even before we won the project, while we were preparing our proposal for the RFP, we came across a particular piece in the exhibition that stood out to us: Dimanche by Yves Klein, a mock newspaper of the popular French weekly Dimanche.

“It gave us the idea to make our proposal a mock newspaper of that mock newspaper. Our proposal took the form of a tabloid newspaper, with layouts and typefaces that matched those used in Dimanche, and proposal sections (timelines, bios, client references, case studies) designed in newspaper style. Ironically, the Yves Klein piece was also a favorite of Wendy Weitmann, one of the show’s curators. We suspect it played a small part in us winning the project.

“Once the design process began, it made sense to explore how the same newspaper concept could be extended into an interface for the site. We explored the idea of treating each exhibition section as its own unique newspaper, each with its own particular layout, masthead and headlines. Of course we provided alternate design directions, but the newspaper felt innately right from our initial proposal and on through the design process. It ultimately became the chosen conceptual direction with which we moved forward.

“Particularly intriguing about the interface is that it relies on text, rather than images; the typographically-treated titles take visual precedence in the navigation. It’s a subversion of the conventional thumbnail interfaces of most art exhibition sites, where images and artist names dominate. Here, the emphasis is on the titles of the artworks, and on how unusual and banal they can often be, such as How the Dictatorship of the Parties Can Be Overcome, Fright, Artist’s Shit, as well as numerous ‘untitled’ works. Having the user confronted in each section with a strange yet engaging set of titles offered a novel way for visitors to navigate the show that, in our opinion, resonated with subversive and ironic tone of much of the artwork.” —Anh Tuan Pham

Credits:
Allegra Burnette, MoMA/Anh Tuan Pham, creative directors
Anh Tuan Pham/Sacha Sedriks, interface designers
Lee Misenheimer, Flash programmer
Shannon Darrough, MoMA, producer
For Office Use Only, project design and development
MoMA, client