Gagarin receives the Global Design Awards at SEGD

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Hringur Hafsteinsson and Nils Wiberg with the SEGD representatives at the Global Design Awards Ceremony in Seattle.

Gagarin was awarded the Sylvia Harris Award 2016 and an Merit Award 2016 by The Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD)  for three exhibits designed for the Canadian Museum of Human Rights in Canada (CMHR).

The criteria for the Sylvia Harris Award is for a project which addresses accessibility of designs, and enhancement of communication for projects in the public realm.

Gagarin had the honour of designing three interactive installations that contribute to the museum’s aim of creating an engaging experience about human rights that will inspire lasting and meaningful change in visitors. 

We at Gagarin are thrilled by these awards and we would like to take the opportunity to thank all the great talents who collaborated with us on this ambitious project, including the brilliant people at Ralph Appelbaum Associates (RAA) and the CMHR.

There are over 1,700 members in more than 20 countries in SEGD and among 371 submissions. SEGD is a global, multidisciplinary community of professionals who plan, design, and build experiences that connect people to place. The society includes graphic and information designers, fabricators, architects, exhibition designers, technology integrators, interaction designers, brand strategists, students, wayfinding specialists, teachers, and others who have a hand in shaping content-rich, experiential spaces. 

The SEGD jury had the following comments about the project:

“We applaud the efforts of this firm for its acknowledgement and dedication to challenging our responsibility to make our museums and institutions open and accessible to all. The methodologies practiced in this project should illustrate that it is not enough to simply adhere to government accessibility guidelines by rote. We must see access to information as a core value of our culture and continue to challenge ourselves to expand the opportunity of information and experience”

“Gagarin’s three exhibits contribute to the museum’s aim of creating an engaging experience with human rights that will inspire and leave a lasting impression on visitors. Developed using Universal Design principles, the exhibits aim to set new world standards for universal accessibility. They provide a near-equitable experience for visitors regardless of language or physical limitations (vision, hearing or mobility).”

Read more on SEGD website.

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The criteria for the Sylvia Harris Award is for a project which addresses accessibility of designs, and enhancement of communication for projects in the public realm.


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The Living Tree is a video projection on a large wall-space in the Protecting Rights in Canada gallery. Copyright Canadian Museum for Human Rights, 2014. Photography: Ian McCausland/CMHR.


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The Collective Actions exhibit features diverse and compelling stories of ground-level activism in a wide variety of human rights fields. Copyright Canadian Museum for Human Rights, 2014. Photography: Ian McCausland/CMHR.


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The Defenders Exhibit highlights the remarkable achievements of a selection of Canadian personalities who are fighting actively against human rights abuses. Copyright Canadian Museum for Human Rights, 2014. Photography: Ian McCausland/CMHR.

Created 24 June 2016