When I joined the Terrace project, only the renderings of the proposed restaurant in the California Academy of Sciences' west garden existed. I was charged with giving the museum’s new higher-priced dining option a distinctive identity and designing its menu and table numbers—building a brand from a building.
Beginning with the wordmark, I developed custom type inspired by the structure’s thin steel columns. Other elements of the restaurant and surroundings—the pops of blue on the ceiling, the local ingredients featured on the menu, and the natural setting of the park—brought to mind cyanotypes, the early deep blue photographs invented by botanist Anna Atkins. I foraged from the museum’s living collection of native plants and created original cyanotypes for the Terrace. I was able to expand my role to design the other aspects of the dining experience, including prototyping exterior signage and curating furniture and server uniforms.
Featured in the San Francisco Chronicle
Credits: Deborah Lao (Design & Art Direction), Alex Salz (Project Management), Rhonda Rubinstein (Creative Direction), Mark Cavagnero Associates (Architecture), Watermark Press (Printing), Thomas Swan Sign Company (Production & Installation)
Building photos by Kathryn Whitney.