CENTRL’s Renate and the Kennedy Exhibit at the Oregon Historical Society

Lauren, CENTRL’s Community Manager & I (Lexie – the Happiness Coordinator) recently went to the Kennedy Exhibit at the Oregon Historical Society to support our community members, Anne Bernard & Amelia Tyson with Renate. We highly recommend you visit and indulge in the full Kennedy experience.

A little bit about our members:

Renate’s Principal Anne leads the development of master planning and museum audience engagement through creative content, exhibit development and spatial planning. Her expertise in shaping and managing experiences has developed through projects that require the highest levels of visitor engagement, scientific accuracy and cultural sensitivity. She brings in-depth knowledge of museum collections and research, as well as an understanding of institutional and educational challenges and goals.

Amelia Tyson, Renate’s Physical Designer & Project Coordinator has a background in architecture and fine art, Amelia is a both designer and artist. She brings a balance of creativity and practicality to her design work at Renate. Her aptitude for systematic thinking and organization lends itself to coordinating projects from concept through to final implementation.

Caroline Gut leads the direction, design and development of the creative vision for each project, transforming content into powerful experiences that engage, educate and inspire. Utilizing an integrated approach to design, she creates a relevant and meaningful visual system and guides its expression through spaces, graphics, audiovisuals, interactives and brands to create a cohesive immersive experiences.



A Brief Q&A with Anne Bernard about her thoughts on the exhibit experience:


Q: What was Renate’s role in the execution of this exhibit? For example, do you design how the space will look as well as what content will be included?

A: Renate was responsible for the exhibit design.


Q: What was your own personal connection to Kennedy’s story that made you want to help in this project? Who decides what the exhibit will be about?

A: We love all museums and I grow more interested in American history the more I learn about it. My personal connection is that JFK and I are both “Choaties”. We went to the same boarding school. The overall topic, in this case JFK life, comes from the museum. We then work in tandem with them to develop the narrative walkthrough and collaborate on how to best tell the story. For example, we decided to start with the assassination so that we could end a cheerful note — his legacy.


Q: How did you guys get a hold of the historic memorabilia? Like Jackie’s dress? Or some of Kennedy’s hand-written letters?

 A: The artifacts in the exhibit are largely from two private collections, the Pete Mark Family Collection and the Shapell  Manuscript Foundation as well as the Oregon Historical Society.


Q: Is there anything else you’d like to say about the exhibit to peak other’s interest in attending?

A: Go immediately or you will regret it. For the design community here in Portland, I would urge you to come. The Kennedy’s were the first presidential family to realize the symbolism of the office and in effect curated all the photography, film that we have come to know and take for granted. They hired Raymond Loewy to do rethink the optics of Air Force One. The baby blue you see in the exhibit is the blue from the plane-he thought it represented the youth and future of America under president JFK.


Q: What’s coming next? Is another project already lined up?

A: Yes! We are working on a new museum for Benton County Historical Society in Corvallis. Allied Works is doing the architecture and we are doing the exhibit design.