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Vas Sloutchevsky, creative director
Gicheol Lee/Joon Yong Park, programmers
Amie Kweon, database programmer
Frank Desiderio, technology director
Verena Artinger, production artist
Luba Shekhter, producer
Jeremy Berg, executive producer
Firstborn, project design and development
Kohn Pedersen Fox, client

"Beautiful, large images showcase this firm's work while also serving as an interesting means of navigation." —juror Diane Andolsek

"A clean design centered on high-quality images invites exploration. Efficient coding minimizes load time and streamlines the user experience. But most impressive is the management of content—the site is vast and deep, yet navigation seems effortless." —juror Ian Coyle

Overview: At every level, this image-heavy site for Kohn Peterson Fox highlights the firm's innovative approach to contemporary architecture. Its exploratory interface is inspired by floors and stairwells, while every page acts as a case study, allowing users to familiarize themselves with company projects.

• 900 images, each shown at 4 different resolutions
• 300MB total file size
• CMS with automatic photo optimization
• 4-level information hierarchy

Comments by Vas Sloutchevsky:
“We started this project on a high note. We were big fans of KPF’s architecture and believed that working on their site would be a perfect match for our design aesthetic. Of equal value to us was the fact that they chose us over RG/A, the uncrowned king of interactive design. However, little by little, the enormous complexity of the task began to hinder our efforts.

"For starters, Kohn Pedersen Fox is a global company with two main offices in New York and London; the difference of opinion between the two teams required that we conduct dozens of interviews in each city. After completing the research phase, we were left with tons of unprocessed data and a wealth of uncategorized images and books written about KPF. Making sense of it all was the task of our producers who diligently distilled all this information into a single document that was suitable for our designers.

"After two weeks of intense work we presented three unique design directions. One of them struck a chord with the client. Metaphorically speaking, the navigation structure of the winning direction resembles floors with stairwells between them. In addition, each page of the site acts as a mini-case study allowing visitors to get familiar with KPF's work while reading any piece of information. By adding a few minimalist interface elements we conveyed the feeling of precision and modernity in KPF's architectural approach.

"Unfortunately, the actual production of the site took longer than expected. We had cross-Atlantic video conferences to discuss little things like the thickness of the 'smart frame' in pixels. (I remember it taking quite a few calls to arrive at a mutually agreeable three pixels!)

"Once we finished work on quite an elaborate CMS and populating the whole site with data and images, we handed the finished site off to the client in hopes that it would launch in May 2005. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen until September; the CMS had such flexibility that the client was switching projects and associated data up until the very last day.

"The world saw the site almost a year after the comps were first shown to the client.”


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