PERFORMING
SCULPTURE

PERFORMING
SCULPTURE

PERFORMING
SCULPTURE

Category:
UX/UI, Motion Graphics, Exhibition

My Role:
Design Research, UX in Motion

Overview

Overview

This project was the interview task at Tate Modern to create the content of Digital Escalator Panels (DEPs) in order to promote and advertise the exhibition 'Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture' in the London underground stations.

This brought me on to 'How do I apply UX into the DEP contents without asking passenger to use their fingers to interact with the screen?' instead of the initial purpose of this task ― displaying a video on screens.

DESIGN PROCESS

DESIGN PROCESS

Performing Sculpture-vector-01



Alexander Calder (1898-1976). Calder was one of the truly ground-breaking artists of the 20th century and as a pioneer of kinetic sculpture, played an essential role in shaping the history of modernism. 

- Tate Modern

 

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Alexander Calder in his Roxbury studio, 1941
Photo credit: Calder Foundation, New York / Art Resource, NY

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STEP 1 & 2

STEP 1 & 2

Field Research

Field Research

First of all, in order to achieve the objective: interact with passenger without using their fingers, and bring them into the world that Alexander Calder created, I visited the busiest underground stations i.e. King's Cross, Waterloo, Victoria, Piccadilly Circus, Oxford Circus, Green Park, etc.

 

First of all, in order to achieve the objective: interact with passenger without using their fingers, and bring them into the world that Alexander Calder created, I visited the busiest underground stations i.e. King's Cross, Waterloo, Victoria, Piccadilly Circus, Oxford Circus, Green Park, etc.

 

Define and Discovering

After exploring the environment within different stations, there are a few findings in common:

1. Strong wind and noise were always produced while the train was approaching at stations.

2. People tended to focus on their mobile phones or were easily distracted by other elements if the DEP screens were not interesting or repeatedly playing the same video on every screen.

3. As escalator were continuously moving up, it was difficult for passenger to concentrate on a single screen.

After exploring the environment within different stations, there are a few findings in common:

1. Strong wind and noise were always produced while the train was approaching at stations.

2. People tended to focus on their mobile phones or were easily distracted by other elements if the DEP screens were not interesting or repeatedly playing the same video on every screen.

3. As escalator were continuously moving up, it was difficult for passenger to concentrate on a single screen.

STEP 3 & 4

PANEL 1 - the logo

So with those findings mentioned, how to utilise the first panel to catch passengers' attention and introduce Tate to them at the same time?

Based on the effects of strong wind and the splendid reputation of Tate, I created the animation which numerous dots are gathering into the panel centre, forming the Tate logo as its original structure of dots, then it dramatically explodes back to dots while the train is approaching and producing the windy environment in real time, which the passengers see the animation and feel the environment simultaneously.

The first panel as a metaphor: worldwide masterpieces of art are collected and visitors are flocking together at Tate. After the explosion, one of the dots is travelling through the following panels as same speed as the escalator. Consequently, people are enabled to passively interact with the panels which escalator carries their bodies up and catch their attention by the animated dot.

PANEL 2

The dot travels to the next panel — moving along with the wire structure, illustrating one of the Alexander Calder's most iconic mobile sculptures 'Antennae with Red and Blue Dots' by the stimulation of its realistic kinetic movement. 

PANEL 3

Wire — the core material in Alexander Calder's artworks. In this panel, the travelling dot illustrates the Calder's wired self-portrait as the central panel, emphasising the key factors of this exhibition: the artist himself, the material and the kinetic movement of which this artwork is consisted.

PANEL 4

This panel depicts the image of the tennis player, Helen Wills, who has been described as "the first American born woman to achieve international celebrity as an athlete." She won 31 Grand Slam tournament titles.

The purpose of this 4th animated panel is to interpret the core of his artworks and career via the involvement in movement, choreography and performance.

PANEL 5

This panel presents the details of the sculpture "Antennae with Red and Blue Dots" as the conclusion of his delicate artworks that is going to be displayed at the exhibition.
 
Finally, the title and location are unveiled on all panels, indicating where the artworks will be exhibited, and again the artist who had changed the definition of sculpture.

n.Performing Sculpture-02

Acrobats, c. 1927. Wire and wood, 34 1/2" x 9" x 12". Exhibited at Tate Modern, 2016

Copyright
Picture, font, quotation : Tate Gallery
Motion graphic DEPs : Christopher Hsueh

Reference
ALEXANDER CALDER: PERFORMING SCULPTURE

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