Responses by Evan Bohringer, art director, Ross Gales, creative director and Jules Batstone, producer, Pollen
Background: The website gives the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) a powerful new platform to share its stories. Its’ aim is to engage with a broad range of audiences around contemporary art, artists and ideas, and also to reach out to art lovers beyond the museum walls. The site immerses users in a continuous cycle of exploration as they browse the collections, exhibitions and constantly evolving program of events.
Highlights: The site is designed with an ‘artist-first’ approach. We wanted the artists’ voices to come through in all parts of the website, achieved through large callouts showing the artist’s work and featured quotes. We also acknowledged the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, who were the traditional owners of the land that the MCA stands on, with a fullscreen treatment that gives users a moment to pause and reflect.
Challenges: Making sure all the aspects of the site were seen and approved by the right people. There were a lot of stakeholders involved, who were all passionate about their own area of the site, but we were fortunate enough to constantly communicate with the MCA project managers.
Favorite details: Creating the entire website using a modular approach, allowing the MCA team flexibility in the creation of each page. Each part of the site is controlled by the curators, who craft the exhibitions and content so that the voice of the MCA and the artists are properly represented. We also created a library of modules that the MCA could use to construct each page.
Navigational structure: The navigation has two core states. The first is static, an ever-present smaller version of the menu that has a quick link to the What’s On page, search or full menu. When the full menu is opened, it becomes an interactive discovery experience, allowing users to either navigate to their intended destinations or discover suggested curated content.
Anything new: Collaborating with an off-site development team. We used a combination of Bohemian’s Sketch App and Elastic Projects’ Abstract App to design the website and allow for easy collaboration, file sharing and version control. We also used Principle to prototype the interactive animations and better communicate our vision of the interface to the developers and MCA.