The Art of Immersive Scientific Diagrams in Exhibit Design:
Geology Lessons from Gros Morne Discovery Center
At SayoStudio we strive to reveal scientific processes that are otherwise hidden, like the geology that shapes our planet. One thing that sets us apart from many other science communication studios, is our commitment to provide context in our science visuals. Thus, we were thrilled to create the exhibit scientific diagrams for ‘Story in Stone’, a comprehensive exhibit showcasing the region’s unique geology.
Nestled in the heart of Newfoundland, Canada, Gros Morne National Park boasts breathtaking scenery and a complex geological history. To highlight the park’s role as a unique example of plate tectonics in action, Reich&Petch, Expograhiq, and Parks Canada crafted the overall exhibit design. Yet, they were still missing a crucial piece. They needed an experienced science illustrator to accurately depict the geological history. We love partnering with other designers and communicators and were happy to help the larger exhibit design team by creating science illustrations to complete the visitor’s journey.
Integrating Science Diagrams into Immersive Exhibits
‘Story in Stone’ showcases a variety of illustrated displays and visual elements that unveil the unique geologic setting of Western Newfoundland. To precisely illustrate the various stages in geological time, we worked closely with local geologists and Parks Canada. We sifted through technical diagrams and scientists’ notes to translate each geological event into a visual narrative. At the same time, SayoStudio worked with the design team’s parameters to ensure a seamless learning experience for exhibit visitors. We meticulously integrated large-scale science diagrams into the exhibit design displays.
Read on for our visual journey through Newfoundland’s geological history.
A Visual Journey Through Gros Morne’s Geology
Gros Morne’s geologic story begins over 600 million years ago when Newfoundland was part of the large paleo continent Laurentia. In turn, Laurentia was part of the larger supercontinent Rodinia. Yet, it was on the cusp of pulling away from Rodinia. Rodinia began to break apart, as intense plumes of magmatism from Earth’s mantle caused tectonic rifting. As the plates continued to spread apart, a new ocean called the Iapetus Ocean formed.
The Iapetus Ocean divided Rodinia into Laurentia to the west, and Gondwana to the east. Over millions of years, sedimentary rock formed from deposits in the Iapetus Ocean. Today, part of what makes Gros Morne so fascinating are the rocks and fossil evidence that documents Rodinia’s rupture.
Geology of Gros Morne Today in Diagrams
You might ask, how did the rocks from the bottom of the ocean end up back in Gros Morne today? The tectonic plates continued to shift. Eventually, they crashed back together forming a subduction zone. Interesting side-note: This cyclical geological process of opening and closing ocean basins is called the Wilson Cycle.
The Iapetus Ocean closed nearly 475 million years ago. The tectonic collision formed the Long Range and Appalachian Mountains of current-day Newfoundland’s landscape. Over the past two million years, the national park’s scenery has been further molded by subsequent erosion, uplift, and repeated glaciation events.
This detailed geological history has profoundly influenced Newfoundland’s topography and has left a lasting imprint with observable geological evidence that persists to this day. SayoStudo’s science diagrams help give National Park visitors insight into the incredible terrain they hike across.
Science Communication: Story in Stone
This collaboration created an engaging and captivating visitor experience at the Gros Morne Discovery Center. The scientific diagrams created by SayoStudio are visual guides, transforming the exhibit into an immersive journey. They Invite visitors to be active participants in the unfolding geological narrative of Gros Morne National Park.
These collaborations empower us to give our cherished audience vivid visual descriptions of historical, complex events. SayoStudio takes pride in its illustrated contribution to this project, seamlessly blending art, science, and education. We hope you explore collaborator’s Expographiq and Reich&Petch. It was such an honor to create these scientific visualizations that play a major role in translating the complex geological history of Western Newfoundland.
Stay tuned for future exhibit collaborations or if you would like to check out our volcano cross-section animation!