Tord Boontje

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Naturalis

Naturalis

In 2017, Studio Tord Boontje was asked by Naturalis Biodiversity Center and Neutelings Riedijk Architects to design large scale graphic images for their new museum building. These images are printed on acoustic panels, light boxes and functional panels.

Each image is a visual story, celebrating the wonder and variety of the natural world.

We have created over 100 panels which are installed throughout the museum. These panels vary in size from an average of 1.2 × 3 metres to the largest panel at 27 metres long.

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At the beginning of the design process I chose to create each panel as a small story and relate this to where in the building the panel would be placed. The stories are not part of the contents inside the galleries but do relate to these.
In the building’s atrium a group of panels depict different ecosystems from around the world. Panels in the restaurant show what animals eat alongside ones depicting different taste sensations. Collages of animals that don’t normally meet in reality are placed near the gallery celebrating diversity. Earth, Ancient Lifeforms, Ice, Early Life, Micro, Attraction and Decay are other themes. Topping the stair mountain is a large blue sky filled with flying creatures.

The images on the panels are built up as collages; a mix of photography, archival drawings and new drawings. At the start of the project, we experimented with different images and found that using photos of the animals really brings out their characters. This way of combining photographic material and drawn material also became a new way of working for me.

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We also created graphic icons for the Naturalis web site and patterns for staff uniforms and wrapping paper and gift bags for the shop.

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Photography by Scagliola & Brakkee, Naturalis