we spent a good part of 2009 redesigning vitruvius, the main architecture portal in brazil.
like an actual city, the site had accumulated 9 years of chaotic growth: navigation wasn't clear and there was no functional or visual unity that characterized the portal.
we started by proposing a division into 3 main sections; newspaper (news, schedule, etc.), magazines (7 academic online magazines) and research (a book guide and an index of the whole site).
we came to the conclusion that this division should be the most visually remarkable element of the website. so, we marked the 3 sections with thick bars and repeated the word vitruvius 3 times on the headline.
at the same time, the studio estação, which was designing a logo for the site and the magazines proposed a logo dividing the syllables in vitruvius. so, we ended up associating each section to a syllable.
inside each section, we attempted to create with few elements a well defined hierarchy, that made clear the site's structure and navigation.
in the same effort to reduce the number of elements, we designed the covers of the sections in black and white. the colors of the images and bars that identifying each sub-section were only apparent in mouse-over.
another element that seemed significant to us was the fact vitruvius gathered a series of magazines that were born exclusively in digital format.
that led us to use courier for the whole site.
at the same time the font reminds us of paper and typewriters, for which it was designed, it was one of the most common fonts on the internet due to its 'safe font' status, being installed in all pcs and macs.
since it was a monospaced font, we also saw courier as a reference to programming software.
project made at nu. at the time we published a small text where we talked about the project; link here.