Pratt BFA Communication Design Thesis

Lila Meyer Graphic Design

Visualizing ‘Angels in America’

Human-centered
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These three projects are an exploration of storytelling through data, working to convey what makes the play Angels in America the masterpiece it is. Live theatre is constantly at a disadvantage by being so physically inaccessible to many (which feels particularly applicable in the current moment). Translating the experience into book form is still physical, like sitting in a theatre before actors, but in a more easily disseminated form.

The first project analyzes the dialogue: every word was categorized by speaker, audience, content, and emotion and manifested in six books that place the emotional complexity at the forefront through color pages and exposed binding.

The second project presents (most) of the many themes as dichotomies through five dos-à-dos bound books. The covers are radar plots, quantifying all the ways each theme is used. The content is comprised of the selected instances and a complementary icon system that identifies the line’s speaker.

That leads into the final project, visualizing the characters. Each of the eight actors is presented as a card - one per part, so sixteen total - with their respective relationships visualized on the front and time spent on stage on the reverse.

I hope the reader comes away with (1) an appreciation of live theatre, feeling that they got to experience it in some small way and (2) to understand what a feat this play is to perform - and why it’s absolutely worth it the 7.5 hours to see it live.

For further exploration, visit lilameyer.com/thesis.

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