Wayfinding that creates a sense of place at Tate St Ives

As part of the award-winning Tate St Ives Project, which has seen the original building completely refurbished and a substantial extension created, CCD were commissioned to create a new wayfinding system.

Congratulations Tate St Ives, winners of:
ArtFund Museum of the Year 2018
RIBA South West Award 2018
RIBA National Award 2018

New and Old

Part of the wayfinding brief was to create an integrated system, not only with the original gallery and new buildings, but to provide links with the local community and encourage people to explore the gallery spaces.

Honing the solution

Ethnographic research was conducted to understand the behaviours of both visitors and staff, including workshops and dynamic feedback techniques to evaluate the previous wayfinding challenges and identify how to meet the needs of the new structure.

From these insights, a temporary system was installed and over several months CCD gathered data on behaviours and continued to refine.

Designing with history in mind

The design was inspired by the origins of the gallery – a gasometer. The concept evolved to create 3D signage that reflects the architecture of the gallery, with colors specific to each gallery. Consistency with the Tate’s iconic branding was key to the story and identity of the gallery.

The new wayfinding solution creates a sense of wandering, facilitated by the discreet wayfinding. The detailed ethnographic research informed the design of a truly intuitive system that supports and guides visitors on their journey. It encourages exploration both within the gallery and enticing tourism and community into the spaces.

Images: Ian Kingsnorth Photography