Battelle is the world’s largest, nonprofit, research and development organization. Their selling line is “The Business of Innovation.” Our overarching goal was to brand the lobby and cafeteria of their global headquarters in a way that embodied innovation.
The design challenge was to show Battelle as a global leader in science and provide a way for the public to experience their value. We worked with BHDP Architecture to reinforce their changes to the space, so our solutions would extend their goals. We also teamed up with a Obscura Digital and Murphy Catton to ensure tight control over the end product.
Our intent, throughout the lobby, was to monumentalize science in an abstract way. The molecule sculpture is where this goal is epitomized. A 3000 pound steel sculpture of a molecule reveals itself to visitors in the lobby. As they make their way through a glass wall the space peels away and reveals the entire sculpture, which can be touched and occupied.
The lobby also features an interactive video installation that has 4 modes. A sleep mode plays a subtle animation 5’ tall by 30’ wide. The follow mode tracks users with a branded animation which entices people closer. The user mode is a content-rich playful way for multiple users to find out more about the scope of Battelle and its contributions. The presentation mode shows a series of monumental video presentations, triggered remotely. The seamless integration of these, together with the depth of information accessible, makes this installation unlike any other.
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Our goal was to create an immersive interactive way of experiencing the Battelle brand that tapped into the wonder we all feel when we discover something. The interactive wall tracks you from up to 20 feet away with an animation, beckoning you to approach and discover. It then invites you to touch it. When you do, you discover that there is a wealth of animated content that tells a rich story of the history and capabilities of Battelle. White Design Studio, in conjunction with Obscura Digital and Murphy Catton developed a device that can track the movements of three individual users, in three dimensions, to deliver a personalized conversation between the user and the brand. The leader of a large group can remotely command the wall to play from a selection of monumental videos that take over the entire width of the 30 foot screen and all six channels of audio.
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The centerpiece of this environmental branding project is a 3,000 pound steel sculpture of a molecule developed by the scientists at Battelle. It is a portion of a molecule for a material key to the production of Hydrogen Fuel Cells. We think of this object as the church steeple in a small town. It is visible from much of the first floor and second floor and serves to anchor the entire project. For us, it monumentalizes science but also the connections Battelle makes between disciplines, which is at the root of Battelle’s specific value as a business.
White Design Studio developed a language of patterns that we used in the media and graphics of our environmental branding package. The patterns are made up of three elements. Squares, Circles and Hexagons. They are organized into streams, and within the streams, begin to align to local grids. Squares represent tables and frameworks for data. Circles represent atomic and molecular relationships. Hexagons speak to metallurgy and crystalline structures. These are all diagrams for scientific relationships and lenses through which we understand science.
How do we tell a story with data? In this age, designers are challenged to make sense of a growing accumulation of information. As more data is created, there is a need for better methods to display it. This expanding field can be called information design or information architecture. Its fundamental purpose is to express, with clarity, the aesthetics of information. One of our favorite designers working in the area is Moritz Stefaner moritz.stefaner.eu who calls himself a practitioner of information aesthetics. We have always used information architecture as an internal tool to organize large jobs. Now we are designing new ways to use apply these methods to deliver our clients’ data through a branded experience. Look for updates on an interactive table that uses motion tracking and physical objects to drive a sea of connected data points.
Welcome to our new website. We have redesigned it to make it easier to show our work, collaborate with partners, and share the things that inspire us. White Design Studio focuses on environmental graphic design and the branding of architectural spaces, but our strength and our passion lie in designing across all media. Our new home on the web better displays our capabilities and the creative pulse of our studio.
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A Source of Inspiration
When White Design Studio set out to design 9 floors of environmental branding for the new CareSource facility in Dayton, Ohio, we had two parallel goals. We wanted to make a series of statements that illustrate to the company’s broad audience, its specific value. We also wanted the branding to embody the company’s core values and remind the staff of the importance of their impact on the lives of others. We did this by crafting a system of statements that met both of these goals, and tying those statements to photographic examples of the people they impact. We strengthened some of the company’s equity graphics and used those pieces as a three-dimensional quilt to tie our elements together. We worked closely with BHDP and designed our solutions to strengthen their architectural goals. Geograph manufactured the finished product.