Scenography is per se an area where a multitude of disciplines come to work together. In order to create a compelling exhibition experience for the visitor you have to consider space, movement, objects, words, orientation, surface, light, sound, emotions, products and the translation of physical space into printed matter and digital space.
Which means that you need architects, product designers, writers, programmers, light and sound specialists and of course graphic designers, those who are good at working in real space and those who understand the intricacies of book and web design. And this list is only on the design side of things.
Rereading Change by Design by Tim Brown, an advocate of design thinking, I stumbled across an interesting definition of the nature of team work across disciplines. “In a multidisciplinary team each individual becomes an advocate for his or her own technical speciality and the project becomes a protracted negotiation among them, likely resulting in a gray compromise. In an interdisciplinary team there is collective ownership of ideas and everybody takes responsibility for them.”
From my experience a scenographic design team often starts out as an enthusiastic inter in the ideation phase, veers into an edgy multi in the execution phase only to come together again on the home stretch to celebrate an ecstatic inter success at the opening.
While we were working on an exhibition on documentary film, a collaboration between the University of Television and Film and the Pinakothek der Moderne, both in Munich, we (the graphic designers that is) had the idea of documenting our work on the show as a kind of meta documentary. As there was no documentary filmmaker about to do this for us, we thought of different ways of portraying the scenographic process without holding a camera. In the end, we decided that the common link between the collaborators is the computer screen. The task to collect a screenshot every day of the different team players fell to Edgar, our intern at that time, and he did a fantastic job collecting and posting them on Tumblr.
Here is a shortened version of what we did from October 21 to December 1 in 2010. Enjoy.
To learn more about the project go to www.szenografie.org
© chezweitz & roseapple · Tumblr Images and photos of opening: Edgar Khandzratyan
© Rose Epple, 2020