Conestoga news

January 10, 2024 3:40 PM

Conestoga graphic design students’ creativity showcased in immersive museum exhibit

An immersive exhibition created by students in Conestoga’s Graphic Design program will soon be on display at THEMUSEUM in downtown Kitchener.

Conestoga College_CURRENT design.png
An immersive exhibition at THEMUSEUM in downtown Kitchener created by students in Conestoga’s Graphic Design program will open in February.

The exhibit will be in the museum’s first permanent immersive gallery experience called EYEPOOL, which opened in spring 2023 to host digital, projection-based content on a wide variety of themes.

State-of-the-art projectors by Kitchener-based Christie Digital create an immersive experience that flows over the walls and floor of the 800-square-foot gallery and combines visuals, sound and technology.

The museum plans to work with local artists and post-secondary programs locally and across Ontario to feature in the exhibit. The call for proposals on an exhibition around the theme of water became a class project for Conestoga Graphic Design students, beginning last September.

Faculty John Baljkas, Lucy Bilson and Mike Powell met with THEMUSEUM’s marketing, technical and curatorial directors and teams of students to co-ordinate the collaborative project. Teams of second and third-year students designed branding for the exhibition along with the content museum-goers will experience inside the gallery. 

“Thirteen teams of students created unique exhibition names, logos, and complete brand guides for the upcoming exhibition,” said Baljkas, Graphic Design professor.

Six of the student-imagined brands were shortlisted, and an exhibition design titled CURRENT by the team of Katia Jellicoe, Teagan Ruttimann, Hailey Vanleeuwen and Alexandra Maurice was chosen.

“CURRENT explores several aspects of the exhibition’s theme from the concept of water to the cutting-edge technology used in contemporary exhibition design,” said Baljikas when describing the rationale for selecting the exhibition brand. “Text and image are used to subtly reference design terminology, moving water and electricity, contemporary culture and THEMUSEUM’s mission of community engagement.”  

Museum staff worked closely with faculty and students throughout the process - an invaluable real-life experience for the learners ahead of entering the workforce. Many will go into screen-based fields, including animation and user experience, and this project also an opportunity to work on dynamic graphic design.

Each of the 13 teams contributed immersive experiences based on their interpretations of water and will continue honing their work this month.

Museum staff are excited to unveil the exhibition, slated to open February 16.

“Conestoga’s students have done a wonderful job putting together a brand new experience for THEMUSEUM’s digital immersive gallery, EYEPOOL. The students were provided with the broad theme of water for the creation of an original digital exhibition, and they were able to take that theme and run with it. The result is CURRENT: 13 completely unique environments that are at the same time cohesive, led by the alluring branding of the exhibition, which the students also developed,” said Sarah Love, senior manager of exhibitions. “We can’t wait for THEMUSEUM’s audiences to experience CURRENT for themselves - you won’t find anything like this anywhere else.”

Conestoga's three-year Graphic Design advanced diploma program is recognized as one of the top design programs in the province. It employs a project-based learning approach that addresses design, digital content creation, communication, inter-personal, technical and enhanced employability skills.

The program is part of the college’s School of Creative Industries, which offers dynamic programs spanning all aspects of media, communication and design.