Smashing Boxes | 03.22.16 | Insights

Moogfest Website Fuses Art and Technology

  • Design
  • product strategy
  • Web

UPDATE 4/5: The Moogfest website has been nominated for two Webby Awards. Voting is now closed.

Durham, NC’s music culture and technology prowess make it the ideal home for Moogfest. Named for the inventor of the Moog synthesizer, Dr. Robert Moog, Moogfest is a biennial music festival that celebrates the convergence of music, art and technology. As Durham celebrates its first annual Moogfest, Smashing Boxes was excited at the opportunity to partner with this amazing brand and get their tenure in Durham off to an amazing start.

This future thinking festival needed a future focused website, so we partnered with Moogfest to create a custom built site that can grow with Moogfest year after year. Moogfest, which had previously been held in Asheville, needed to kick off their residency in Durham with a bang. No typical run of the mill site would do. Enter a team of crack developers and designers who built a platform that Moogfest can manipulate and build upon year after year. Sure it’s hip and flashy, but its system architecture and careful craftsmanship ensure a solid foundation for years to come.

The site’s centerpiece is Substrate. A WebGL collaboration between Moogfest, musician/producer The Haxan Cloak, graphic designer Mathew Lucas, and Smashing Boxes lead developer David Sweetman. The responsive, interactive application allows users to control audio tracks from The Haxan Cloak’s remix of Moses Sumney’s cover of Laurie Anderson’s O Superman by swiping and tapping on mobile devices or utilizing the arrow keys+mouse on a desktop device.

Users can click their way to, or take the road less traveled, by visiting and looking for the Easter egg that initiates the Substrate experience.

Moogfest describes itself as “a platform for conversation and experimentation”. That spirit, which inspires so many to come to Durham, resonated deeply with Smashing Boxes and our internal team who built the site. Music, art, and technology are at the heart of Moogfest and, we’re proud to say, at the core of and Substrate.

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