Project Summary

The Leiden Collection is one of the largest and most significant private collections of seventeenth-century Dutch art in the world. Though previously almost entirely anonymous in its loans, The Leiden Collection launched an international traveling exhibition in 2017. With the travelling exhibition came the need for a robust standalone exhibition site

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url: www.leidencollectionexhibition.com    |    completed: June 2017

Challenge

The Leiden Collection exhibition site was launched in late 2016 to present the most up-to-date information about the Collection’s traveling exhibition. The exhibition site was originally built using extensive plugins, which meant that after only 6 months of using the site the Leiden team found the back-end extremely cumbersome to use and update. To add to the challenge, the Leiden team needed to see the site live in time for the opening of their exhibition in Beijing, only 6 weeks after the project start date.

Solution

We completely rebuilt the back-end of the site using WordPress as our CMS to make updating content easy. We also revamped the design of the site to improve the user experience as well as to fill holes that were left after we uninstalled the redundant plugins from the back-end. Effective communication between the Cuberis and Leiden teams made for quick decisions and helped keep this project on track.

Results

We’ve received enthusiastic feedback from the client as they’ve updated and navigated through their new site. With the improved interface, and specification of content in the backend, managing scores of paintings shared among multiple traveling exhibitions has been greatly simplified.

Project Highlights

Custom Artwork Content Type

By careful specification of artwork detail fields, artworks can be easily associated with multiple exhibitions. Consistent display, and optimal formatting tools provide additional control and enhancement of how each work of art is displayed.

News and Media Library

The News and Media page organizes news coverage of the collection in exhibitions across the world and in multiple formats. Posts are arranged as tiles on the main News and Media page by date published, but can be sorted by exhibition, news category—from general news, videos, audio, press releases and other remarks—as well as allows visitors to search by keywords in news titles. Single news pages contain external links to the original source, and hero images for each page can be selected from images used in the news story, or if no images are available, an image will be pulled in automatically from the collection’s gallery.

Artwork Arranged by Subgroups

The Leiden team wanted to be able to arrange their content to flow on the page like it would for a visitor in the physical exhibition space. To facilitate this we broke up the typical gallery appearance with larger images to indicate a new grouping, and included a subtle arrow design to direct the viewer’s eye to images contained in subgroups.

Custom Artwork Library

Each exhibition page features the full curated set of artworks exhibited in each museum. We created a custom library in the backend that allows us to drag and drop any piece of art into an exhibition page to reuse that content again without entering each piece individually over again.

Repository of Past Exhibitions

We created a user-friendly navigation for visitors to the site to explore past exhibitions. We focused on a design that would set past exhibitions apart and make it clear that these exhibitions had closed without disrupting the clean and uncluttered visual design.

Content Toggle Functionality for Exhibition Pages

We gave the Leiden team the ability to publish an exhibition page when they announce a new exhibition, but leave selected content in draft mode. This allows them to continue to curate and adjust the order of the art in an exhibition without making those changes public while the page is live to publicize the upcoming exhibition.

Before & After

slide to explore

before screenshot
after screenshot

Praise

Working with Cuberis has been an excellent experience. We first engaged the Cuberis team to enhance our exhibition website in adherence to a tight deadline. The entire project has been smooth, from our initial interactions through the site’s deployment. The team’s passion for and dedication to the project is evident in the final product, which is a site that is eye-catching and simultaneously user-friendly. In addition, the back-end of the site has been thoroughly thought through and allows for us to easily make updates. Perhaps of utmost importance is the open dialogue we have had with the Cuberis team, the members of which are communicative and accessible. We have already begun working on our second project with Cuberis, and are continually impressed with the team’s passion and proficiency.

Alexa McCarthy, Curatorial and Collections Associate
The Leiden Collection

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