Entering the gossamer shell of exhibit-design firm Studio Dega's exhibit at EuroShop 2011 was akin to spelunking inside an otherworldly subterranean grotto. The 52-by-26-foot exhibit featured stretch textiles butterflied across the ribs of aluminum extrusions. Magnetic LED strips were affixed to the aluminum architecture, outlining each fabric panel and flooding the cavernous space with color-changing effects that rotated from cool blues to verdant greens to rose-petal reds and lilac purples. Positioned atop a black, high-gloss flooring, the structure and its embedded lighting reflected and refracted, enveloping attendees in a welcoming, multihued glow.
To crank out a high-decibel display that would transfix attendees at the 2012 Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association expo, Klipsch Group Inc., a manufacturer of high-end speakers, teamed up with The Exhibit House. The 20-by-20-foot island exhibit manifested a sort of visual equalizer, using lighting elements that changed in response to music that pulsated from Klipsch's super-sexy speakers. Suspended at heights between 13 and 15 feet were 16 rectangular, lantern-like boxes fashioned using tensioned fabric. Each box contained programmable LEDs that cycled through a plethora of colors in response to the music frequencies. The rest of the exhibit featured product displays and three 12-foot-tall towers against the back wall. In the center of these two towers was a third, glossy white tower displaying a collage of product offerings and lit with overhead spotlights.
|Everything is Illuminated
To brighten up its offerings at the American Society of Clinical Oncology show, Wyeth LLC, a pharmaceutical company, plugged in a string of strategic, synchronized lighting elements. With the help of exhibit- and event-services company Global Experience Specialists Inc., the 50-by-80-foot exhibit featured an interactive educational station - a circle of six chairs, or pods, each outfitted with a touchscreen that was loaded with information about three of Wyeth's products (Torisel, Relistor, and Mylotarg). When attendees tapped the touchscreen and selected one of the three products to learn more about, a halo of light emitted from frosted LEDs around the rim of the screen, glowing a color that correlated with that specific product. The Torisel product, for example, elicited a blue hue; the Relistor, an orange; and the Mylotarg, a red. Syncing with those colored halos, LED spotlights positioned overhead and at the base of the chair bathed that individual attendee's pod in one single color. The lights effectively signaled to booth staffers which of the company's products people were learning about at any given time, and facilitated conversation when attendees stood up from their luminescent product-info pods. The result was an environment where learning about pharmaceutical products became a mentally and physically illuminating experience.
|Please, Enlighten Me
Determined to transform its 10-by-20-foot booth into a phosphorescent beacon at EXHIBITOR2012, Display Supply & Lighting Inc. (DS&L) rummaged through its toolbox in search of materials to create an incandescent spread of its lighting capabilities. What it came up with was a simple yet stunning example of the flattering effects lighting can generate. The 8-by-20-foot back wall of the exhibit was made of sheer tensioned fabric and featured images of three light bulbs, each emblazoned with a word of inspiration for attendees who entered the space: "Think," "Imagine," and "Create." Working as a sort of auroral composition, the back wall's colors shifted, as did the light's luminosity, thanks to two of DS&L's lighting systems - Flex (programmable LED nodes) and Fuse (a linear, programmable product that allows color washing and fading effects). At various times, the giant bulbs appeared to glow, pulsate, and change colors, while at other times the entire back wall would ripple through a veritable rainbow of hues. Standing in front of the back wall were four 3-foot-tall glowing pedestals showcasing different color temperatures of white light. Ranging from warm white light (2,700 degrees kelvin) to daylight (6,000 degrees kelvin), the pedestals served as visual touchstones to teach attendees about the effects that color temperatures have on illuminating everyday objects. Between the opulent back wall, the large-scale light-bulb graphics, and the radiant pedestals, the light-loaded booth entranced attendees.
|The Fine Kraft
To craft an exhibit that would lure attendees like a bowl of mac 'n' cheese beckons hungry whipper-snappers, Kraft Foods Inc. turned to MG Design Associates Corp. and Quinn Fable Advertising Inc. Together, they transformed the 60-by-60-foot booth into a delicious color-changing destination at the National Association of Convenience Store show. The exhibit featured three 10-by-20-foot fabric banners combined to create an "L" shape, which was suspended 16 feet off the ground and lit from above. LEDs cycled through the colors that make up the Kraft logo, while the exhibit's all-white interior properties functioned as a reflective canvas upon which a rainbow of hues were painted. Also included in the Kraft exhibit were two 10-by-14-foot walls fitted with sheer fabric and bordered with LEDs.
|Light at the Museum
It takes a lot of panache for exhibitors to impress attendees at the American Association of Museums (AAM) annual MuseumExpo. After all, these attendees make their living by creating exhibits, too - only theirs are housed inside museums around the world. So to dazzle the crowd at the 2012 MuseumExpo in Minneapolis, Solomon Group created a 20-by-20-foot space that boasted rich visuals and spectacular lighting. The exhibit's back wall comprised a 16-by-10-foot LED wall (made of 30 15-millimeter panels) displaying a variety of vibrant images that were time-code synced with the exhibit's lighting, sound, and even smell. For example, one of the image queues featured a lush orange grove brimming with blossoming trees, which spread its branches across the massive LED wall. When this image appeared, a scent-air machine released spritzes of orange-zest fragrance, and a display created using five 32-inch HD monitors cycled through macro images of orange slices. Meanwhile, dramatic music thumped as a projector rigged overhead tossed orange polka-dot patterns across the exhibit floor and upon the high-top tables, and a system of 11 theatrical lights splashed shades of orange throughout the exhibit, saturating the space in a pool of citrus luminescence.
The focal point of Freeman's 20-by-30-foot booth at EXHIBITOR2012 was an illuminated confetti-like array of 26 suspended white cones dangling like starched lace hankies. Constructed from 4-by-8-foot slices of plastic resin, the cones worked as an imaginative canvas for colored LEDs. A system of 45 light fixtures nestled in the overhead truss changed hazy hues in response to an in-booth activity wherein attendees selected which of four brand strengths mattered most to them. The brand-strength options (creativity, strategy, innovation, or logistics) corresponded with four syrupy-sweet colors (mellow orange, icy-cool blue, chlorophyll green, and mulberry purple), which reflected off the cones and bathed the booth in striking chromatic splendor.
|Zen and the Art of Exhibit Lighting
Nothing suggests peace of mind like a Zen garden. So to show that Trojan Technologies, a water-treatment company, strives to give its customers their own peace of mind when it comes to a clean water supply, exhibit-design firm Kubik Inc. modeled the Trojan exhibit after a Buddhist sanctuary, only this Dharma display was defined by diodes. The 20-by-20-foot booth premiered at the 2011 American Water Works Association show and featured three planter boxes of sorts, each of which was filled with fake river rock and sprouted long acrylic tubes, a display that was meant to represent thickets of bamboo one might find in a monastery esplanade. The more than 100 tubes varied in opacity (some were clear, some were frosted, and some were painted solid white), and the frosted shoots each contained a strip of LEDs that radiated a soothing, meditative glow. The exhibit, then, was reminiscent of a fluorescent bamboo forest, with tubes rising between 6 and 8 feet tall. To complement the faux shoots, an eye-catching structure comprising 12-foot-wide red and white disks was suspended 20 feet above, and five mirrored 10-inch-round decorative balls, meant to represent water droplets, dangled like fresh rainwater spilling onto and reflecting off of the luminous "bamboo shoots" below.
With a massive 45-by-90-foot booth space at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show, Hisense Co. Ltd. wanted to visually stun attendees as soon as they approached its exhibit in the Central Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. To achieve that, the company turned to exhibit house MC˛ and lighting firm Fine Design Associates Inc., and together they constructed a cloud-white canvas out of the exhibit properties; then using light fixtures as paint brushes, they morphed the monstrous sterile space into a sort of psychedelic lava lamp of vivid, shifting colors. Riffing off of its tagline "Life Reimagined," Hisense aimed to create a dream-like environment - a feat it accomplished by using a total of 175 theatrical light fixtures, 16 LED wash fixtures, and eight automated gobos. The 85-by-40-foot hanging banner, suspended 30 feet above the exhibit, offered the company name and tagline, and was awash with polychromatic lighting. In the center of the exhibit, a 48-foot-long wave-like structure was similarly illuminated with an undulating river of projected shifting colors, creating the illusion of gentle hypnotic waves washing overhead. Coiling around the perimeter of the exhibit's three product-display stations was a total of 800 feet of linear LEDs, whose colors vacillated to echo the wave structure overhead. Also projected near attendees' feet were graphics of the Hisense name and tagline, cast in crisp white letters via gobos. Thanks to the chimeric effects of lighting, the exhibit certainly left a "reimagined" impression, that of a metamorphosing dream world. E
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