Peak 15: Creating the surrealistic identity for Data Pipe Dreams

Research Made Visible

In this article, Designer Sigrid Schmeisser discusses Peak 15 and Design Informatics’ relationship in designing the 2018 Design Informatics Pavilion.

Peak15 was approached by Design Informatics to design and conceptualise the exhibition identity for this year’s Pavilion, a pop-up exhibition format Design Informatics developed in 2016 for the first time to showcase research by students and researchers.

Under the theme of Data Pipe Dreams Biomorphis architects conceived an intriguing structure incorporating pool noodles on the exterior – a playful interpretation of the brief. This provided a great basis for our design interpretation: a surrealistic composition of intricate tubes winding and bending their way through the exhibition title and seemingly transmitting data. We purposely kept the colour scheme minimalistic, working with the strict duo-tone approach for the exhibition structure. Visitors were given A2 posters, this year’s free take-away and print promotion, which were printed with spot neon colours. The highly versatile design was also translated for digital promotion and social media advertising.

Alongside the exhibits we placed bespoke information panels in fluorescent yellow acrylic, which glowed slightly on the edges when the light hit them at an angle. Due to the amount of exhibits we decided on two panels each per artist in order to highlight both exhibition title and artwork information.

For the wayfinding and exhibition signage outside the pavilion, we utilised pool noodles as components to display the exhibition title in vinyl – connecting the identity with the pavilion structure once more.


Research Made Visible

Peak15 was founded to bridge the gap between science, communication and design to make research visible. We believe that in order to create new knowledge and engage with wider audiences we need to find ways of distilling insights. Having worked with researchers over the last years, we could see how collaborations between academia and design can lead to impact beyond their own field. Outcomes may vary from identities, publications, digital projects or exhibitions such as the pavilion.

Since 2014 we have collaborated with Design Informatics on a range of projects including the concept and design for the Little Sparta Website and digital garden experience (launched 2018) as well as Artcasting, an app that allowed museum visitors to explore and share art beyond the walls of a gallery space in 2016. Over the years we have been involved in four research exhibitions for DesignInformatics.

We have also exhibited at the Edinburgh Science Festival in 2017 with the project Beelines, which was selected for dedicated local press coverage for our outstanding exhibition stand design. Currently we are working on research publications for Resourceful Ageing (Elisa Giaccardi, TU Delft), looking at empowering elderly to age resourcefully with the Internet of Things and After Money (Dr. Bettina Nissen), which investigates our relationship with money in a world that will be more and more dominated by cryptocurrencies and concepts such as the Blockchain.

Follow us on Twitter for more updates on our work: @Peak_Fifteen. More case studies can be found on our website: