Co-art: Reimagining opera with communities & technology
STUDIO / DESIGNER
Emily Loughran, Karen Hanratty, Lenka Nagyova
Emily Loughran (Lead Designer)
Karen Hanratty (Creative Director)
Lenka Nagyova (Designer)
Design Challenge and Design Ideas
Co-Art.eu shares the outcomes of the Traction research project, a Horizon 2020 funded project, which aimed to contribute to the renewal of opera as a territory of cultural and social inclusion, with the aid of innovative technology.
The website objectives were to help arts producers understand that Opera must change to survive, to share principles of co-creation and its importance for a more socially equal world, and to inspire and show that it is possible.
We needed to be creative in how we shared learnings, tools, and resources, and define principles and practice of co-creation. Another design challenges was in naming the website, taking into account that it is a multilingual website in 5 different languages.
The Co-art website was designed to be elegant, inspiring, and energetic to appeal to opera creators, and move away from the visual language of Research and Innovation websites.
How the brief was fulfilled
We choose the name “Co-art” to reflect the core nature of the project. The name is short, easy to speak, and understood in the five project languages; English, Irish, Catalan, Spanish, and Portuguese. An accompanying booklet was designed as a physical output of the project.
The website clearly introduces the unfamiliar concept of co-creation, leaving an inspiring impression. It demonstrates the highs, lows, and future potential of co-creation through content design and storytelling. The balance of factual and emotive content compels users to learn more about ideas from this project.
The soft colour palette and typography style improve the reading experience while promoting a welcoming feeling. This website is responsive and has loading animations to give a sense of movement.
SUSTAINABILITY and UNIVERSAL DESIGN
Social impact and reducing inequalities are core to Co-art.
From the outset, our aim was to design a website that would be accessible to all and to minimise it’s carbon footprint.
Decisions were made during the design process to reduce the carbon footprint of the website, such as avoiding the use of white background and reduce the number of typefaces used. Layouts maximise the impact of imagery whilst keeping the image sizes small to lower the carbon emissions required to load the website. The website is hosted on 100% renewable energy.
This Co-art project addresses Goal 10 and Goal 11 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) both through the website content and design.
The purpose of the website is to reduce inequality by promoting inclusion of communities who would not normally be involved in the creation and enjoyment of opera. Co-art also helps in supporting the creation of sustainable and inclusive communities, outlined in Goal 11.
The typeface was purposefully chosen from a small independent foundry with a social conscious.
The design solution for the Co-art.eu website was based on universal design principles, ensuring the resulting website is barrier free and accessible to everyone. It was designed and built to comply with the EU Web Accessibility Directive, following WCAG 2.1 Level AA guidelines.
Despite close competition, Co-Art stands out as the winner. It uses a Universal Design approach to challenge tradition in an inclusive and innovative way. By applying co-creation methods, it ensured inclusion through a creative and sustainable format that increased its appeal to new target groups and audiences."