Singapore Graphic Archives

Building a repository of Singapore’s visual culture


Justin Zhuang

Year 2019
  • Art Direction
  • Digital
  • Content Strategy

The Singapore Graphic Archives website is an independent repository of graphic design and visual culture in Singapore. The archive was founded in 2011 by design writer and researcher Justin Zhuang with a focus on post-war modernist artefacts dating back to the 1950s—an era marked by ambitious industrialisation, which fueled the growth of the design industry.

 We were commissioned to expand on the website’s content architecture. In its original form, the website was mostly presented chronologically based on the time of posting. Our team, together with Pettycache, devised a new way of introducing content, where visitors can explore and navigate collections within well-defined categories. We sorted the site under three primary sections: Gallery, Collections and Profiles. 

Based on their objectives, visitors can embark on a journey tailored to their interests. For instance, visually oriented or casual viewers may prefer the ‘Gallery’ section. We also included suggested filters listed alphabetically on the side by project type, industry and decade for easy navigation. Otherwise, Those arriving with specific names of designers may choose to explore from the ‘Profile’ category. Visitors with research interests can delve straight into further reading on the ‘Resources’ page, or ‘Projects’ to browse various collaborations featuring the archives. 

Adorned in patriotic red and anchored by Rima from Omni Type, this typeface introduced a contemporary take on the classical Grotesk genre. Its tapered stems were a lovely detail that also served as a subtle jab towards the blandness of the 90’s corporate ephemera designed in Singapore.

Through this project, we aim to foster a deeper, more critical appreciation of the graphic design history that continues to shape Singapore’s culture today.

Practice Theory