Pentagram Remixed Ningbo, CN 2017.

We collaborated with Pentagram on the exhibition design of their 40th anniversary retrospective as part of the 7th International Graphic Design Biennial at the Ningbo Museum of Art in China. Their work is displayed over several rooms, divided thematically into History, Scale, Motion, Narrative, Marks, Print, and Diversity.

For History and Scale, 40 posters are displayed horizontally on red bases and arranged in a grid, creating a timelined field of work, history, and personality that insists on movement to experience. For Motion and Narrative, two films play in opposite open rooms. The Marks and Print rooms are symmetrically related despite their vastly different content. Each room contains a long, dramatic black-stained wood table in the center. The Marks table has a red tabletop with 400 petri dish-like glass discs printed with red Pentagram-designed logos, camouflaging on the tabletop.

The visitors choose discs and place them over lights embedded within the table to project the logos onto the walls. The room becomes an ever-changing arena of the various “marks” presented in a unique, interactive, and analog manner. The Print table has a milled black tabletop so that each of 50 books rests perfectly within it. Each book’s orientation points an imaginary desire line at a spot on the room’s walls where the books are mounted. The books become sculptural objects that require tracking to explore their content. Lastly, the Diversity room is a data visualized explosion of Pentagram’s portfolio. Each page is extracted on a thin plastic sheet with a vacuum-formed P, slightly distorting the graphics. The partners then ranked the projects based on 40 attributes, which generated a rolling cloud-like surface to be explored by walking through and around.