This 16 acre former factory in the heart of the Berkshires is unlike any other museum in the country. The Mass MoCA is unconventional, vast and exhilarating. We took a trip there with our Environmental Design class and explored the ways in which visitors experienced and navigated such a space.
The Mass MoCA is very non prescriptive in the way it reveals itself, which gives it character but can also be overwhelming to visitors seeking clear direction and structure. How could visitors be moved around in a new way while still experiencing the space organically?
Currently, the museum's branding and signage system is inconsistent and scattered. As the largest contemporary art museum in the US it deserves a unique and recognizable visual identity. I started by simplifying the site's map and reworking the outline into the letter M, which was the window into a new logo. By playing around and experimenting I was able to build a whole visual system off of this new-found shape.
A particularity of the Mass MoCA is its long-term exhibits, which are on view for up to twenty years. I wanted to put emphasis on this to help visitors curate their time. If they know they have limited time and that the Sol Lewitt installation will be available for another ten years they may plan their visit accordingly. Here, the color scheme of green and yellow marks a distinction between the short term and long term exhibitions.
This project was fascinating as it opened my eyes to how an experience can be scripted and enhanced through design.