The University of British Columbia*
UBC Ceremonies needed a timely and fiscally responsible solution that would address the growing number of visitors to the original Remembrance Wall in the foyer of the War Memorial Gym during the annual Remembrance Day Service. The service had long outgrown the foyer and expanded into the auditorium. In the foyer, space was limited for the display of ceremonial wreaths and there was a disconnect between the authentic Remembrance Wall and the ceremony which took place several hundred yards away inside the gymnasium. (The event includes massed regiments, dignitaries and 1500+ attendees, and is followed by refreshments.) UBC wanted a fast-tracked refresh of the UBC Remembrance Day Ceremony that would unify the overall experience.
The primary concern was that the authenticity of the Remembrance Wall and foyer “exhibit and memorial space” might in some way be compromised with changes to the ceremony, the wall lighting and the addition of digital signage. The historical gravitas was fiercely protected by everyone. The final design solution honoured the memorial in all ways while offering expanded access to the UBC Community. A dignified facsimile of the memorial wall was reproduced inside the gymnasium through the erection of a large exhibit structure (approx. 50 linear ft.). The final backdrop featured a reproduction of the Remembrance Wall with the addition of a single poppy motif and a black field for setting the flags and ensigns. Printed on matte vinyl panels, the installation could be (and continues to be) erected each year and stored off-site by Xibita, the fabricator. Environmental graphics included poppy markers for wayfinding that guided visitors to the event and pull-up banners at the building entrances. Digital web assets advertised the event, while motion graphics on the digital display provided a countdown and pause for two minutes of silence.
* A Note from Arlene
This project was created during my five years as Design Manager for UBC Communications and Marketing (previously Public Affairs). During that time we pioneered and developed a series of design systems (and programs) that built a solid foundation for a unified UBC Brand. This project was designed in collaboration with my colleague Ping Ki Chan, another systems thinker.
Ceremony photographs by Don Erhardt | UBC © 2017
Pull-Up Site Banners
Wayfinding Poppy Markers
Digital Signage and Web Assets
Lighting for the Existing Wall