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P-06 Atelier Depicts Portuguese Parliament’s History

Firm creates unique, place-based EGD

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P-06 Atelier, a Lisbon-based, environmental-graphics provider, played a vital role in helping Portugal celebrate its constitution’s centennial. Leaders of Portugal’s Assembleia da República, the country’s Parliament, engaged the firm to create a series of environmental graphics that celebrates the milestone.

“We wanted the signs to not only look like an exhibit, but to feel more like a permanent installation,” Nuno Gusmao, P-06 Atelier’s principal, said. “Researching materials was an important part of the job. We reviewed all kinds of reflective surfaces to serve as the perimeter for the graphic treatment. We selected mirror-finish aluminum because we thought it provided the most elegant look. It was a challenge to find an appropriate reflective material, because we wanted to avoid too much glare, and it had to be visually compatible with the display.”

The Assembleia’s staff selected the display’s subjects; P-06’s design team filtered the content to discern the most appropriate commemoration. P-06 Atelier developed the structural drawings using Vectorworks software, and created the textually heavy graphics with Adobe’s InDesign.

P-06 Atelier partnered with EuroStand, also of Lisbon, to produce the graphics. The shop printed the graphics with Oracal’s 651 calendered vinyl on its Durst Rho 700 UV-cure-ink, flatbed printer. Eurostand applied the graphics to the opaline-acrylic lightbox face, and secured them to the aluminum backdrop with countersunk fasteners that provided a seamless appearance.

“When mounting graphics to a lightbox face, it’s vital to eliminate all shadows,” Gusmao said. “We were using a very deep cabinet, and the client was concerned about cost, so we installed fluorescent tubing to light the box, and tested brightness until we knew there would be no shadows.”

P-06 Atelier and Eurostand collaborated on a somewhat more whimsical graphic package for the library (or, in Portuguese, the somewhat more lyrical “biblioteca”) for the Pavilhão do Conhecimento (“Pavilion of Knowledge”) in Lisbon, an interactive museum that emphasizes science and technology. Gusmao said the project was one of several visual-communication enhancements made to the facility; this was one designed to create more impact in the Pavilion’s entry foyer.

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“The books and bookshelves in the foyer needed to be more compelling, so we created a clean space with black-and-white graphics that create a strong, positive-negative contrast,” Gusmao said. “We selected a typeface that would be neutral and integrate well within the space.”
 

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