Design Bugs At The Charter Museum

charter museum Okay, what’s with the bugs? I did not head over to the Charter Museum at the State House expecting anything but pure unadulterated joy; I couldn’t wait to see this fabulous artifact finally being displayed in an appropriate setting (and that part of the exhibit does not disappoint). But the first thing a visitor sees upon entering the museum is this awkwardly designed mural. If there is an explanation as to the connection between the whimsical border of dragon flies and beetles and the magnificent Colonial Charter on display within, I could not find it.

The website of exhibit designer BrianJonesDesign does not elaborate on their inspiration nor does the state’s Lively Experiment website offer any clarification.

These doodles have all the artistic sophistication of the banner above the chalkboard in Mrs. Johnson’s third grade homeroom — a graphic artist I consulted cringed at the layout and overall design of the entire mural.

But you don’t need to be a professional designer to immediately wonder “What’s with the bugs?”

The Charter Museum is free and open to the public, 8:30am to 4:30pm, Monday through Friday.

3 thoughts on “Design Bugs At The Charter Museum”

  1. Thank you so much for this information and now I can see the source of the individual elements (which are tiny details in this wildly ornate border). But once the design team had extracted these bits of flora and fauna, and strung them along the top like a wallpaper border for baby’s nursery, they should have taken a step back — evaluating the design of the mural as a whole, including the typography and overall layout which are also not great — and realized that it just did not work. The wall is unappealing and confusing, and authenticity alone can not magically transform it into good design.

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