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Experiential Design (XGD) 
Experiential Graphic Design involves the orchestration of typography, color, imagery, form, technology and, especially, content to create environments that communicate.
Examples of Experiential Graphic Design include wayfinding systems architectural graphics,signage and sign programs, exhibit design retail design and themed or branded spaces. Increasingly XGD involves the use of digital technologies and systems that present dynamic content through motion graphics and make possible rich interactions between a user in a place and the information being provided.
Wayfinding Design

Wayfinding refers to information systems that guide people through
a physical environment
and enhance their understanding and
experience of the space.
Wayfinding is particularly important in complex built environments such as urban centres, healthcare educational campuses and tranportation facilities. As architectural environments become more complicated, people need visual cues such as maps, directions, and symbols to help guide them to their destinations. In these often high-stress environments, effective wayfinding systems contribute to a sense of well-being, safety, and security




In urban settings, wayfinding specialists develop signage and information systems for both pedestrians and motorists, who each have unique challenges navigating streets and roadways.


These information systems help people develop “mental maps” of the terrain and simplify their routes to the extent possible. Healthcare campuses present a unique set of navigational challenges.


Often, these environments have developed over time and encompass multiple buildings. This makes navigation among the buildings complex.
In addition, patients and families who visit healthcare campuses are often under stress.

Wayfinding systems can help reduce their stress by providing easy-to-follow signage and legible directions to their destinations. In some settings, reliance on text-based messaging is minimized and systems rely heavily on non-text cues such as colors and symbols In transportation settings such as airports, travelers need information to guide them from the roadway to the airport and through the terminal complex. Here, these systems provide directional guidance through a carefully planned sequence that delivers information to users at key decision points in their journey.

Comprehensive wayfinding systems often combine signage, maps, symbols, colors, and other communications. Increasingly, they integrate mobile applications, digital displays, RFID, and other wireless technologies. (Society for Experiential Graphic Design, 2015)

XGD/ Environmental Design

Operating at the intersection of communications and the built environment, the field embraces a wide range of disciplines including graphic design, architectural, interior, landscape, digital and industrial design.


The history of the field, also called “environmental graphic design,” is rooted in the earliest forms of graphic communications such as cave paintings and examples of  “environments that communicate” can be seen in the use of hieroglyphics in ancient temples, the stained glass of cathedrals, and in today’s hyper-communicative places such as the Ginza district of Tokyo and New York City’s Times Square.


The practitioners of the discipline of Experiential Graphic Design in recent years have set the standards for wayfinding in transportation centres airports, railway and subway stations), hospitals museums and on city streets and highways. Learning and immersive environments such as museum exhibitions, and public, civic and landscape place-making programs have benefited from the multi-disciplinary talents of designers to shape experiences that orient, inform, educate and delight users and visitors.


Retail stores, entertainment and hospitality destinations–theme parks, hotels, casinos, sports venues, shopping malls– and other “branded environments” are using the tools and story-telling approaches of XGD to create more engaging and meaningful interactions with their customers
 (Dixon, 2015)

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