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Everything in its Place
Panasonic Corp.'s exhibit featured nearly 250 products in 18,200 square feet of space. Organizing the slew of products in areas such as the Journey Zone and the Retail Zone, Panasonic created life-like vignettes to convey how its technology helps consumers and businesses alike.
White Space
By Charles Pappas with photos by Kathryn Rapier
Client: Panasonic Corp., Osaka, Japan
Design/Fabrication: H.B. Stubbs Cos., Warren, MI
Size: 70-by-185 feet; 50-by-105 feet (18,200 square feet)
Estimated Cost:
$2 million

Estimated Cost/
Square Foot:
$110
hen your company has more than 250 products on display in an 18,200-square-foot exhibit split into two sections, it's a challenge to make your booth look like anything but a big box store on Black Friday. Yet that's exactly the test Panasonic Corp. faced at the 2013 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Working with H.B. Stubbs Cos., Panasonic transformed the potential chaos into coherence, helped by its abundant use of white tensioned-fabric. A trio of branded fabric "blades" suspended from an overhead truss grid visually linked the two main sections of the booth (one on the ground floor of the exhibit, and another on the mezzanine). Below the blades, a 495-foot-long fabric perimeter wall suspended a dozen feet above the floor coursed around the exhibit like a sail on a mighty clipper ship.

Attendees entering the massive booth gravitated to a 20-by-50-foot stage near the reception area. After watching video presentations, such as Danny DeVito discussing how he uses the Internet to assist his filmmaking, visitors navigated to the exhibit's 10 major product sections, including the Journey Zone and Retail Zone. These areas were neatly differentiated by fabric wall panels marked with dye-sublimation graphics. Inside, the sections were as distinct from each other as plaid is from paisley. In the Journey Zone, for example, Panasonic and Singapore Airlines offered a replica of an Airbus A380 first-class cabin. Flight attendants from the airline greeted attendees, and then demonstrated an in-flight information/entertainment center. Nearby in the Retail Zone, staffers working in a vignette resembling a fast-food business showed how digital menus, point-of-sale hardware/software, and security devices could be used for retail applications.

With reams of the pale fabric weaving through nearly 20,000 square feet of space, the Panasonic booth loomed almost as large as a cloud – and, even though it was teeming with technology from TVs to tablets, it felt nearly as light and airy as one, too.

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