Pentagram (London) | Nittygritty
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Pentagram (London)

Notting Hill

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Pentagram (London)

The world’s largest independent design consultancy.  Pentagram’s  design sensibility has had a hand in many of our favourite, and diverse,  brands across the globe. 

Nittygritty has managed Pentagram’s Windows and Mac IT environment since 2013. We empower this global design powerhouse with the technology infrastructure needed to run smoothly today, while proactively advising on future strategy.

About Pentagram

Founded in 1972 in West London, today there are offices in New York, San Francisco, Berlin and Austin. Led by 21 partners, all leaders in fields such as Architecture, interiors, products, identities, books, exhibitions, digital installations, etc.

Interdisciplinary and Collaborative

An interdisciplinary and collaborative group that is a posterchild for management proponents of “flat” organisations.  Each partner manages a team, sharing in overhead and staff resources as well as income and expenses.  When new members are invited in they benefit from the long standing experience of the current partners and the company gains the strengths of new ideas.   Today, second and third generation partners work out of the West London studio.

Designing Recognisable Brands

Pentagram’s design work is familiar and recognizable in our everyday world from the Mastercard logo, the Windows 8 identity,Upworthy, Verizon, Saks Fifth Avenue, V&A, Billboard magazine and many more from different disciplines.  In fact, with the sheer volume of design work, it was difficult to choose a project to focus on for our client feature story.

We finally decided on the Uber of all Rock ‘n’ Roll  works – Exhibitionism:  The Rolling Stones originally opened at the Saatchi Gallery, London in April 2016. Subsequently it has travelled to New York and is scheduled to show in Sydney in November 2018.

Project Focus:  Exhibitionism; The Rolling Stones

Pentagram’s New York partner, Abbott Miller and London’s William Russell collaborated on the design of the exhibition, which was produced by Tony Cochrane and Thea Jeanes-Cochrane of iEC, and curated by Ileen Gallagher. They also produced a book to accompany the exhibition

The exhibition, on 20,000 square feet,  focuses on five decades of the Rolling Stones and creates an immersive experience for fans and visitors.   A history, told in sight, sound, visual objects along thematic installations and environments, successfully  invokes and captures the excitement of one of the most famous of all rock bands.2nd-image-left1
Photo. Pentagram blog

Photo. Pentagram blog

Exhibitionism-Pentagram, London Exhibitionism Photo – Pentagram blog

Services Provided by NittyGritty

  • IT support, consultancy  and troubleshooting
  • Technical support, hardware and software –  Apple and Windows environments
  • NGneerTM reporting, planning and strategic advice
  • Software and hardware procurement
  • Mobile and remote working infrastructure

A Nittygritty client since 2013,  we have migrated Pentagram’s network from a unmanaged collection of Apple macs with local accounts which were connecting to legacy Apple X-Serve hardware to one with managed network logons and enterprise storage and backup capabilities. Now the whole of the mixed MAC and PC environment is being managed from one place.

Tools like PDQ Deploy, Apple Remote Desktop and Deployment Studio allow us to manage and deploy user accounts, computers , software and their configuration without impacting on the Studio’s productivity.

Each of the Partners have major deadlines every week so the biggest challenge we face is providing a quick response without disturbing users.

By streamlining and standardising processes we are able to deploy a new Mac or PC, fully configured for use within 30 minutes. We apply most settings virtually, further saving time.

Outcome and Results

  • Efficient management and deployment of IT resources
  • Elimination of unplanned downtime
  • Proactive planning of IT infrastructure upgrades and improvements
  • Aligning technology with business requirements
  • Lowering the total cost of IT ownership

Thematic Installations

It’s not a chronological narrative.  Instead,  Pentagram designed a series of spaces based on particular aspects of the band’s work, time and lifestyle.  For instance,   A replica of their first apartment on Edith Grove in Chelsea is complete with unwashed dishes in the sink, dirty plates and cigarette butts on the Formica dining table,  old armchair and sofa and four unmade beds. And of course, vinyl records strewn on the coffee table while blues music plays from a record player. All authentically recreated by the designers and their  teams.

With distinct areas over a vast space, the entire exhibit is tied together with bold graphics and color for continuity.   The exhibit is going on tour, and the design is capable of being ‘reorganized’  into  different venues while still holding to the original design intent.   Its currently in NYC until March 2017.

For  more,  check out this great interview by Rachael Stevens of Creative Review.

Stevens, Rachael (2016), Exhibitionism: Pentagram’s Abbott Miller and Will Russell on designing The Rolling Stones’ new exhibition.

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