21st Biennale of Sydney

Identity, Physical, Digital, Environmental





The Biennale of Sydney is recognized as one of Australia’s premier cultural events. Held every two years, the three-month-long exhibition is accompanied by a program of artist talks, forums, guided tours and special events, nearly all of which are free to the public. The 21st Biennale of Sydney, under the direction of Mami Kataoka, will be presented beginning in March 2018.


The inaugural Biennale of Sydney was held in 1973 as part of the program of events celebrating the opening of the Sydney Opera House. Widely respected for working with independent artistic directors, the Biennale has a reputation for having shown the work of renowned artists early in their careers. The Biennale was also the first to focus on Asia and the contemporary art of the region (1973 and 1976); the first to show Indigenous art in an international contemporary art context (1979); and in 2008, the first biennale to present an online venue.

Organizational Type

Arts Organization, Non-Profit


Create a brand system inclusive of a variety of environmental applications and a microsite that draw on the exhibition theme of the Wu Xing cycle and the Superposition principle.


Biennale of Sydney


2017 — Present


Sydney, Australia


Interaction Consortium


The Wu Xing cycle of creation and destruction serves as a conceptual platform for the 21st Biennale of Sydney design.

The Wu Xing philosophy is juxtaposed with the concept of superposition: all states of being existing simultaneously in equilibrium. We have translated the relationship of these two elements into visual dualities: order versus chaos, connected versus singular, and static versus in motion.

Along with conceptual alignment — usability, flexibility, and modularity are important components of the 21st Biennale of Sydney identity design, given the myriad environmental and digital applications of the brand. The visual system is multifunctional. In addition to representing a structured representation of the Wu Xing philosophy—adhering to the sequence of the cycle–(wood, fire, earth, metal, water)–the shapes can also be overlayed in a more creating background patterns that are the perfect solution for extending the graphic language of the design across large areas. These alternate iterations of the WuXing symbology represent the characteristics of superposition: fluid, amorphic, and ever-changing.


Superposition, Wu Xing


The Biennale attracts an average of over 600,000 visits to each edition.


Animation, Extended Identity Manual, Print Collateral System, Digital Collateral System, Environmental Graphic System, Promotional Print Materials, User Experience Design, User Interface Design and Development, Responsive Design

Technical Specs

HTML, CSS, Javascript, AJAX, WordPress

The 21st Biennale of Sydney will be presented over twelve weeks from 16 March – 11 June 2018.

The 21st Biennale of Sydney announcement microsite establishes the exhibition theme of the Wu Xing cycle and the Superposition principle.


The 21st Biennale of Sydney announcement microsite provides visitors with details about artists, venues, events and the season’s curatorial director.


The 21st Biennale of Sydney announcement microsite utilizes responsive design to reflow and display across devices.

( ( SHAKEN ) )