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Pop-Up Exhibition Design


Pop-Up Exhibition Design: Experience through a particular space. Students design a pop-up exhibit based on a research topic of their choosing (see suggested topic ideas below). Exhibit addresses viewers experience through visual storytelling and space.


To design an experience around a consistent theme, idea, discipline, etc., and create a graphic representation expressing this experience in a relationally based time frame. (timeline The duration and the related events are to be determined at your discretion.

This series of assignments explore:

  1. Developing an exhibition narrative (what is the story?)
  2. Spatial planning and object placement (how will you tell the story?)
  3. Exhibition staging and object interpretation (what will the story look like?)
  4. Information delivery and graphics (how will you communicate the story?)


Select a historical event. Suggested topic ideas:

  • Environmental
  • Social Justice
  • Governance (explained)
  • Science


Graphic Design can play an important role in facilitating comprehension and awareness to an audience. At its best, design becomes a story driven experience that educates and makes progress visible, usable or understandable.

Deliverables and Requirements

The process and final design intent should be documented in a Professional Presentation Book. Summary of Assignments:

  1. Developing an Exhibition Narrative: big idea, object list and concept studies.
  2. Spatial Planning: scale model, final object placement and floor plan.
  3. Exhibition Staging: object interpretation and display, elevations, materials and finishes.
  4. Information Delivery exhibition graphic identity and promotional signage system.

Professional Presentation Book must include:

  • Title page
  • Branding Page – Exhibition Logo – Type Choices – Color Scheme
  • Object Labels (3×5” or 4×6”) to describe any displayed content or objects.
  • 3 Main Panels (24″x36″) to visualize the main contents of exhibit. Scaled and mounted on wall at a comfortable height for viewing.
  • Reader Rail (18″x72” or half size 9″x36″) scaled, angled, at waist-level.
  • Elevations (horizontal tabloid) includes wall & floor, stand-up exhibit viewer to scale, 3 text panels to scale, title graphic, and vinyl. Elevations are scaled drawings depicting front and side views of an exhibit. Also known as exhibit elevations or elevation drawings, elevations will have details of all the heights in the exhibit from multiple points in the exhibit.

Project Timeline

  • Week 1: Research: Selecting and researching topic. Gathering reference material, organizing and assessing content
  • Week 2: Research and Sketches. Figuring out the story and how best to represent it
  • Week 4: Develop concept and refine sketches, find or create appropriate, relevant illustration or photography.
  • Week 5: Design and production (Illustrator & InDesign)
  • Week 7: Revisions and final edits    
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