by Beth McGee
Size: 300m2Opening: July 2009
End exhibition: 2013
Subject: 50 objects representing Dutch naval history over the centuries.
The design of the exhibit uses white poles as the dominant visual element on the display cases, information boards and seating. According to dezeen magazine they are "a metaphor for the constant dutch struggle to create stability on, and protection against, the omnipresent element in the Netherlands: water." The graphics used on each display include a white text behind or on clear acrylic which lists the object with some text below. These are mounted below or next to the object within the red painted support structure above the legs. The use of uniform color and the repeated use of the legs on the rectangular structural design elements brings design uniformity. The use of suspended spotlights provides very targeted lighting on each artifacts and contrasts with the low ambient lighting. The earthy colors on the walls, floors, and artifact pedestals are a twist on the national flag colors. The earthy color add to the dramatic yet comfortable atmosphere for discovering how shipping laid the foundation of the Dutch culture. The naval theme is reinforced in the flooring pattern with a compass inlay and the use of multiple color blocking within the flooring materials. There are also some interactive displays with telephones and videos that tell a certain part of the story. These are subtle additions yet obvious enough to portray what is required by the observer. The seating provided uses curvilinear and dark blue shapes that look like water undulation. It also adds softness to the sharpness of the rest of the display features. Overall, I feel the display design chosen adds a great deal of interest to the exhibit. The consistent and strong design concept used is a very valuable design precedent for informing our group exhibit design.