Yamal: Warmth of the Arctic

Category
Client
  • Department of Culture of YANAO Region

The central element of the exhibit's design was inspired by the snow globe, a beloved memento that holds a combination of magic, memories and promise. Each of 23 stories is presented in a large-scale sphere and, taken together, they form a multifaceted portrait of Yamal over the past 90 years. The spheres are grouped but the last sphere in each grouping touches upon the topic that follows, emphasizing connection between nature, people and industrial developments.

The team needed technological solutions that allowed them to preserve the level of craftsmanship they envisioned when designing the spheres and each of the elements that comprise the small worlds within.

The Challenge

The main challenges were to find a narrative and visual approach to tell the story so that it would engage not only visitors but also local population, create a space that in the middle of the Arctic winter would feel inviting and to communicate the main idea of Yamal's warmth not only as a narrative but as an emotion that visitors experience.

Yamal: Warmth of the Arctic Video - Videography: Lorem Ipsum Corp.

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

Endangered birds’ nests under railroad bridges are becoming a wide-spread surprising side effect of railroad construction in the region

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

A golden cloudberry, a local staple, is a rare beautiful and delicious berry

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

The section of the exhibition dedicated to oil and gas industry. The sphere in front illustrates the geological layers in the region.

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

Fish is essential to local life. The region is home to a few unique species.

Design & Execution

Based on the project goals, the team decided to find an overall design approach that would immediately feel different and create an unexpected visual context that would make visitors look at the stories from a fresh angle, even if they were familiar with the factual information.

Presenting the narrative in a series of beautifully lit spheres allowed them to turn each story into its own world using the most visually engaging symbols, images and techniques. And taken together, the spheres formed its own lager world that, with the carefully placed lighting and the shimmering starry sky, felt warm and magical rather than dark and cold. A fabric black box maximizes the illusion of the spheres floating in the air.

The worlds inside the spheres never feel monotonous or look like plastic miniatures due to a variety of formats, materials and lighting, as well as design decisions such as showing a detail rather than a full object or coming up with a symbolic rather than literal representation.

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

This sphere is dedicated to the culture of the region and is inspired by a beloved poem by an indigenous Nenets poet.

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

This sphere gives examples of many objects in our everyday lives that exist in large part thanks to natural gas.

Photo Credits: Dmitry Chebanenko

Reindeer are essential to the lives and culture of indigenous Nenets people. The antlers, with handpainted traditional patterns symbolize their might and prominence.

Slideshow

Yamal: Warmth of the Arctic

Yamal. Warmth of the Arctic

Endangered birds’ nests under railroad bridges are becoming a wide-spread surprising side effect of railroad construction in the region

A golden cloudberry, a local staple, is a rare beautiful and delicious berry

The section of the exhibition dedicated to oil and gas industry. The sphere in front illustrates the geological layers in the region.

Fish is essential to local life. The region is home to a few unique species.

This sphere is dedicated to the culture of the region and is inspired by a beloved poem by an indigenous Nenets poet.

This sphere gives examples of many objects in our everyday lives that exist in large part thanks to natural gas.

Reindeer are essential to the lives and culture of indigenous Nenets people. The antlers, with handpainted traditional patterns symbolize their might and prominence.