An important part of National Arts Centre's dialogue with their community is to acknowledge and thank those who contribute to making spaces like theirs and by virtue access to the arts possible. The recent architectural rejuvenation of the National Arts Centre (NAC) by Diamond Schmitt Architects signals a new and important shift in how the NAC engages with community. NAC is one of the international leading organizations for performing arts and arts education. Through this renovation they wanted to invite the community in, as it is the collective support of the community at all levels which advances the arts both in Ottawa and Canada.
To complement our work on the wayfinding program and to recognize NAC supporters at various levels and commitments of giving, Entro worked with the NAC on named spaces and designed donor recognition installations for the primary foyers.
The voice and messaging of NAC fundraising is anchored by optimism and inspiration, and we designed the donor program to be congruent with these emotional tones. The design details of the installations are also inspired by the architectural history of the building and its present characteristics.
Patterned, bright white backgrounds for the wall displays brighten up surrounding areas while honouring the hexagonal grid of the original Brutalist building. Size, depth and colour are used to visually represent donor levels, while playing with light and shadow to add an engaging dimension of complexity. We echoed the neutral colour palette of the architecture with elegant earth tones and metallic finishes. This limited colour palette also ensures that the hierarchy of donors is subtle, and nods to the overall vision of shared generosity.
Both wall displays were purposely designed for the addition of new donors, through spatial considerations as well as materials that can be easily removed and replaced.
The named spaces follow a similar design, with French and English translations reading left to right, allowing viewers of either language to read area names in their natural order.
Philanthropy is already deeply embedded at National Arts Centre, but with this donor recognition program it is now integrated architecturally in a way that feels natural to the space. Find out more about the exciting programs and events taking place at NAC here!