Krause Gateway Center - Transforming a Marketing Video Into an Art Film

What if you were asked to promote the most visually striking piece of architecture in the Midwest? It’s a difficult challenge, but we at Applied Art & Technology rose to meet it — with a creative twist.

Kum & Go | Krause Gateway Center from Applied Art & Technology on Vimeo.


Before their new headquarters was completed, Krause Group approached the Applied Art team to develop a video concept for the Krause Gateway Center in downtown Des Moines. Designed by world-renowned Italian architect Renzo Piano, whose work includes designs for the new "Whitney" art museum in New York City and "The Shard" skyscraper in London, the building was a gargantuan undertaking of literally international proportions.


The result of that undertaking? A one-of-a-kind work of art that evokes emotions of strength and openness, with sharp, angular overhangs and transparent glass panels. How could we possibly capture the sheer artistry and craftsmanship of such a building?



The Approach: Merging Artistry & Strategy


When we first approached this project, we set out to make a video about the Krause Gateway Center, telling the story of its design and construction. However, that proved to be too ordinary — too boilerplate — for such a staggering architectural achievement.


So, we decided to take a different approach, developing a more idiosyncratic concept that could reflect the building’s artistic essence. In other words, we developed an “art film” aesthetic, using a poetic narrative and avant-garde editing to capture the Krause Gateway Center’s elegant and experimental design. This approach allowed us to evoke the same visceral emotions that the Krause Gateway Center evokes through purely visual means — conveying lightness and transparency through natural lighting and wide, sweeping pans.


"Architecture is the art of making emotion."

— Renzo Piano, lead architect


As a shareable piece of marketing content, we also wanted to zero in on the narrative and tighten the final runtime. To do this, we heavily cut our interview responses to only include the bare essentials. We then pieced these responses together like a free verse poem, resulting in a unique stream-of-consciousness narration.



The Execution: Creating a One-of-a-Kind Visual Style


To make the video feel artistically intertwined with the Krause Gateway Center, Eric Sahrmann, creative director, focused on its unusual layout, which gave way to open, free-flowing interiors. Sahrmann was able to visually replicate these spaces’ natural rhythms with wide angle compositions and near-constant camera movement.


Aerial shots, in particular, highlight the building's visual interplay with downtown Des Moines, especially the Pappajohn Sculpture Park. This remarkable footage, coupled with our stream-of-consciousness narration, weaves a story of the building's relationship to the city in an unbroken, lyrical pattern. With time lapses, accelerated pans and other editing techniques, the final video retains a fluid visual framework that mirrors the building's unique physicality.


Scroll above to watch the video in full.



The Results: How Did We Do?


Members of Krause Group were beyond pleased with the end result. Taking the unorthodox approach of developing an art film aesthetic, we were able to accurately capture the artistic essence of their new headquarters. Not only that, but our editing team condensed the video into a shareable runtime of just over two minutes, turning our little "art project" into a highly engaging video marketing tool for social channels.


The video is currently featured on the Krause Gateway Center website, which we also designed and developed for Krause Group.


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