Nelly Ben Hayoun appointed We Transfer’s first Head of Experiences


Director of the International Space Orchestra at NASA Ames Research Center and Designer of Experiences at the SETI Institute, Nelly Ben Hayoun, joins WeTransfer to design cosmic user experiences and partnerships.

File sharing service, WeTransfer, has today appointed experience designer and director, Nelly Ben Hayoun, as the Service’s first Head of Experiences. Nelly will be an adviser to WeTransfer helping to develop unique, creative user experiences and form innovative partnerships that support the simplicity and hassle-free nature of WeTransfer’s service.

Every week, WeTransfer will feature an entry from Nelly Ben Hayoun’s visual diary, documenting her bold experiential practices and collaborations working with the SETI Institute. Using WeTransfer’s full-screen background, these visual diaries will showcase Nelly’s critical thinking and spatial endeavour.

WeTransfer CEO and founder, Bas Beerens, commented: “Nelly has galactic visions and a diverse mind which fits squarely into the ethos of WeTransfer.

“While WeTransfer is all about simplicity and a frictionless file transferring experience for our 18 million users, we overlay this with some of the most creative full screen artwork, designs and videos which underpin the whole look and feel of the service.

“Nelly wants to democratize space and bring it closer to everyday people, showing that some of the most amazing creativity can come from science and that some of the most recognised science requires lots of creativity.

“We want to help Nelly along this path and inspire our users to have ideas that are out of this world. Nelly will be our creative catalyst, helping us find new ways to bring our creative community of users closer together.”

Nelly Ben Hayoun is the brains behind the International Space Orchestra at NASA Ames Research Centre. In the summer of 2012 the ISO performed Ground Control: An Opera in Space in California. This was composed by a team including Beck, Blur and Gorillaz frontman, Damon Albarn, with Bobby Womack and producer Richard Russell. Alongside this, Nelly is the Designer of Experiences at the SETI Institute and an academic at a variety of renowned research institutions. Her new project, Disaster Playground, investigates future outer space catastrophes and the design of procedures to manage them. In her spare time Nelly is training to be an astronaut.

Nelly further commented: “I am really honoured to collaborate with WeTransfer. I feel very close to the company’s creative vision and communicative enthusiasm for sharing experiences. Building on the success of the work WeTransfer already does so well, I have no doubt that together we can create incredible transfer experiences on Earth and beyond.”

WeTransfer recently hit the 2 million transfers a day milestone with 18 million monthly active users conducting 46 million transfers in October alone. Last month, 4000 terabytes of WeTransfer data passed through Amazon servers, with the level of transfers carried out in November 2010 now the same as the amount carried out in one day on the platform at present. To celebrate this milestone, WeTransfer doubled the transfer capacity of paid-for Plus accounts from 5GB to 10GB.



Interviews and further comment can be provided on request

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About WeTransfer


WeTransfer is a leading file sharing service based out of Amsterdam, providing a uniquely creative space for people to share files. Launched in 2009 by Bas Beerens and Nalden, WeTransfer was borne out of a simple need to provide a solution for people to send large files easily. The service now has 18 million monthly active users and prides itself on its simplicity. The founders’ desire of producing “something their parents could use” has led the WeTransfer team to a service without the complications of logins, signup forms, data capture and banner advertising.


WeTransfer is completely free when sending files of up to 2GB in size, or users can sign up to WeTransfer Plus for €10 a month to make 10GB transfers to multiple recipients alongside receiving 50GB of storage space and the ability to personalise and secure a channel.


Instead of plastering the site with intrusive banner ads, the team has created a backdrop of curated wallpapers provided by a wide community of artists, illustrators, filmmakers, photographers and brands. The result is an enriched user experience to a backdrop of beautiful images. WeTransfer puts the love back into advertising.


About Nelly Ben Hayoun


Nelly Ben Hayoun has been called the “Willy Wonka of design and science” and she is on a mission to bring chaos, subversion and disorder into the design and the scientific world. An award-winning director and experience designer she works with leading scientists and engineers, to devise subversive events and experiences. Ben Hayoun previously collaborated with Beck, Bobby Womack, Damon Albarn, Maywa Denki, Bruce Sterling and Penguin Café in a musical collaboration that took music into space. Blasted from a Japanese launch pad in August 2013 and her most ambitious project to date; she assembled the International Space Orchestra (ISO) - the world first orchestra of space scientists from NASA Ames Research Center, Singularity University, International Space University and the SETI Institute. Hayoun’s feature documentary: The International Space Orchestra, premiered at the International Film Festival in Rotterdam where it was acclaimed by the critique as a “masterpiece” (ICO), a ‘real achievement’ (DOMUS), “as thrilling as watching a rocket launch” and “Spine Tingling” (Guardian). It stars real-life astronauts. The music was recorded in George Lucas’ studios, at Skywalker Sound. In 2013, Icon Magazine nominated Ben Hayoun as one of the 50 international designers “shaping the future”. She is the Designer of Experiences at the SETI Institute in CA, USA and an academic at world leading institutions including the Architectural Association School of Architecture where she is a Visiting Professor (as part of the Unknown Fields Division), Central Saint Martins and the Royal College of Art, where she is a lecturer. She is also a researcher in Human Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London, and in her spare time is training to be an astronaut.