The Beethoven Phenomenon. Exhibition communication, powered by Beethoven’s music. An algorithm that translates Beethoven's musical spectrum into abstract design elements, making his expressivity and cultural impact tangible across a wide range of physical and digital touch points.

In the anniversary year 2020, the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien is exhibiting artists who do more than quote, interpret or contrast Beethoven’s work: The exhibition shows how Beethoven’s expressivity and cultural power permeate artistic practice from Romanticism to the present day. Across eras and disciplines, the exhibits demonstrate Beethoven’s inspirational impact and cultural power: The Beethoven Phenomenon.

This project references the curatorial leitmotif of the exhibition: The aim of the communicative approach is to make The Beethoven Phenomenon linguistically and visually palpable and to anchor the relevance of the exhibition associatively.

Client

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien

Agency

Boros

My roles

Generative Design Consulting Development of the audio-reactive technology

Formats

Interactive branding toolkit Dynamic brand assets for digital & print Interactive web-experience Physical guidance system on location

The aim of the communicative approach is to make The Beethoven Phenomenon linguistically and visually palpable and to anchor the relevance of the exhibition associatively.

This case study depicts one direction of a pitch developed for the KHM Wien. It did however not make it to production.

Like the exhibits themselves, the design is inspired by Beethoven’s music: A specially developed algorithm translates the musical spectrum into abstract design elements that tell the story of The Beethoven Phenomenon.

Visual elements: Color, shape, tonality, abstract elements

On the website, the data-based link between music and design can be experienced directly through interactive elements.

The design elements playfully lead users to the exhibition’s background and content or to practical information on visiting the museum. Beyond the functions shown, the intended software enables interactive and participative applications in particular.

In keeping with the format of the exhibition, the design of the outdoor advertising also literally breaks the mold and spills over into the surrounding urban space.

The immersive concept and the exhibition architecture literally transcend the boundaries of the museum and include staircases as well as the outdoor and entrance areas – thus the guidance system plays a special role. Yellow dots take up the dynamics of the design and show visitors the way.

Each print product is a snapshot of visualized music. The programmed software allows a fully generative design of the exhibition flyer, making each iteration unique.

The visual spectrum of data-based interpretation of music is almost unlimited.