GLAMi Nomination

The new
Institution: San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Designer: SFMOMA
Tags: Blog, Co-design, Collections Online, Digital Strategy, Education, Mobile, Museum, User Experience, Web Design, Video, Website

To reflect SFMOMA’s transformation as we prepare for the new museum to open on May 14, 2016, and to complement our new visual identity, we have redesigned, rebuilt, and relaunched the institutional website.


With input from staff across the museum and the artists we collaborate with — and drawing inspiration from the artworks in our collection and the city of San Francisco — we’ve developed a truly contemporary site that showcases and celebrates SFMOMA’s incredible diversity of exhibitions, events, artworks, scholarship, research projects, artist videos, and staff perspectives.

Projects + Perspectives

An updated navigation structure that reflects not the institutional org chart, but rather the pathways users can take to explore SFMOMA’s online offerings, marks a departure from the standard museum website.


Additionally, the site’s heightened search functionality responds to the fact that nearly 75 percent of visitors land deep within the site via Google and other search engines, as opposed to entering through the homepage.


With a carefully selected color palette, immersive, cinematic images, and generous text sizes, the program and the stories now take center stage. We bring different types of content in and out of focus, and they appear at different visual depths or levels throughout the site. We’ve also introduced the idea of marginalia, which shows related content only when it’s immediately relevant.


All of this is to support a user experience that mirrors being inside the museum, with content presented in stages, just as it does as you walk through the museum. This approach allows visitors to fully focus and, in some cases, fall deeply into the site.