Interlock: Friends Pictured Within is an interactive multimedia projection, made in tribute to the conductor Simon Rattle. Used for its realization means Christie Pandoras servers Box and two series projectors GS.

Christie Interlock Barbican

He Barbican Centre London was opened in 1982 and is one of the largest in Europe. Concerts of classical and contemporary music, theatrical performances, film screenings and art exhibitions are held in this building. Likewise, in the concert hall have based the London Symphony Orchestra and the BBC.

This international centre of art and knowledge has made a tribute to the conductor Simon Rattle, after his return to London, with initiatives such as interactive multimedia installation Interlock: Friends Pictured Within. A projection that explores the 'Enigma Variations' which the English composer Elgar dedicated to his closest friends, representing aspects of their personalities and memorable episodes in their relationship through their musical compositions.

Designed by the artist Jonathan Munroin collaboration with the composer Anna Meredith and the musician and producer Jack Ross, Interlock: Friends Pictured Within posed a contemporary artistic response to the theme of friendship. The work is a production of the program of creative learning Barbican Guildhall, which offers free access to people from all ages and backgrounds to artistic manifestations of the highest level.

Christie Interlock Barbican

The facility, which was shown from September 2017 to January 2018 in the lobby of the Barbican Centre, included an interactive projection of fourteen videos on the theme of friendship, with fourteen original soundtracks to be operated with a few foot sensors, allowing visitors activate simultaneously multiple variations that are interconnected to form an overall composition.

150 citizens participated in the creation of its content, and it also implies to the public that interacts with it and up to the community that moves around the media servers Christie Pandoras Box. They manage the projection and are responsible for everything from the blending and lighting up to projectors shutdown when the last employee of the Barbican has already abandoned the Center.

"One of the most interesting aspects of the installation is that it puts to the test the enormous flexibility of the Pandora Box of Christie. We tend to associate the server with great live shows, but this solution is scalable and modular to infinity, allowing you to manage all kinds of projection, lighting, device or software with it,"explains James Belso, Director of sales of Christie.

Christie Interlock Barbican

Origins of the multimedia experience

It all begins when the great conductor Simon Rattle announces that, after an absence of 15 years, he returned to London to become music director of the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO).

The news shook the international scene and London began to prepare. "A couple of years, Nicholas Kenyon, managing director of the Barbican, asked me to conceive something involving Simon Rattle as an artist associated with the Barbican and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama. For his debut with the LSO, Simon chose the 'variations' of Elgar, and we adapt our celebration party at that election,"says Anna Wilson, producer of the Guildhall Barbican creative learning programme.

Wilson chose as the first artist to Jonathan Munro, whom he defines as "a rarity. It is multimedia artist, builds installations, designs, sculpts, loves to work with sound and Visual. It is a super project manager and an expert computer that teaches children to encode. It was capacity more than proven to manage the technical and artistic creation to complete."

Technical director Tim Bifield was in charge of the audiovisual. One of their first concerns was that installation was located inside an enclosure, with a distance of just viewing a meter.

The solution were two projectors Christie GS, which had the necessary brightness, even in high ambient lighting conditions with its 7,500 lumens. In addition, like many Christie projectors scattered around the Barbican, are laser phosphor, making it run for long periods without spending in lamps. "The GS series has a fantastic image, even at distances as short as. "Their projectors are, moreover, very silent, something suitable in spaces like this, especially to go to a very low ceiling-mounted", designates Bifield.

Christie Interlock Barbican

Projection blending

The next challenge was the blending. The short distance and from the roof angled position advised the use of two projectors to ensure an optimal quality and distortion-free image. To achieve this they decided to resort to Pandoras Box for ease of changing content offering. For example, if someone wants to promptly incorporate a logo, you can place it in an already built blending.

The distance of one meter forced to join exactly lines from both projectors. "We join the lines in the Pandoras Box using Warper Tool, a tool which facilitates high levels of detail and often, which is used on curved surfaces or 3D. The wall is not straight or flat, and that tool allowed us to adapt ourselves to the curvature of the wall", adds Bifield.

Christie Interlock Barbican

Mac and Widget Designer software

The Interlock system used its own software based on Apple Mac. Jonathan planned interactivity and all the videos with MAX software so that they accionaran with foot sensors placed on the ground.

"Rather than add content by Pandoras Box we plugged a Mac, a video or a camera as input live. Pandoras Box shows it exactly as seen on the Mac screen. The advantage is that he prevents the delay of the image, that comes in real time, making sure the audio is perfectly synchronized".

Christie Interlock Barbican

Later, became soft blending with the image, to completely homogenize the brightness and color. "At the beginning took us some time merge with precision edges, but after a couple of facilities became a very fast process." "When we are faced with Interlock we had improved so much, and see how quickly that leaves the blending of edges with Pandoras Box", goes on to explain Bifield.

On the other hand, Widget Designer allows to control the projectors and the content. It is possible to organize schedules and events in such a way that the projections start automatically at the scheduled time. "Every morning at 8 projectors were lit by themselves, and were off at 11 in the evening."

This automation shows other advantages of the Barbican Centre. "If suddenly arises us a trade event, in a matter of seconds I programmed shutdown, a change in content, which turns at four and again to turn off at six".

Bifield also praises the latest version, the V6, which includes Google search, facilitating self-sufficiency without deep knowledge of coding. "Let's say that we want to play content from 10 in the morning. I don't have to type the word 'play' for suggestions. If doubts still me, people in Germany responds them within a maximum of 24 hours.

All the effects that you normally editarías before completing the content can leave practically without touching and add them later, which allows to update on the fly without having to edit".

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By • 28 Mar, 2018
• Section: Study cases, Control, OUTSTANDING, Projection