Made of water and light

Made of water and light

12 March 2021 Off By Facto Edizioni

/ Lisbon has a new gallery for projection mapping and immersive video art. A look at the Immersivus Gallery Lisboa /

The Mãe D’Água das Amoreiras Reservoir in Lisbon is not one of the most famous monuments in the Portuguese capital and is rarely included in tours, but it has ensured a constant supply of water to the sprawling city for centuries. Designed in 1745, it well deserves a visit for its architecture, the beautiful vaulted ceiling reflected on the water to create a dreamlike ambiance. Since last November, the Reservoir also deserves a visit for a new reason: the building is now home to the Immersivus Gallery Lisboa (IGL), the first projection-mapped art gallery in town.

The whole reservoir has been transformed into a monumental canvas on which to project content in 360º. Visitors can choose between standing places around the space and sitting places on the floating platform in the center of the reservoir. The space comes alive with video mapping that colors and animates the walls and ceiling for 30-minute shows. The gallery was created by Portuguese-based specialists Ocubo, a creative international studio that conceives corporate and artistic events using light and technology, and brought to life with AV Stumpfl technology, namely their newest PIXERA media server software. Ocubo paid a number of visits to the site to record technical details and obtain the photogrammetry required to create the 3D content, and later deployed a total of 20 projectors to cover the entire room, which included all 4 walls, the ceiling, and 4 large columns in the center. 

The IGL is the second installation of this kind created by Ocubo in Portugal, after the Immersivus Gallery Porto (IGP) in the historical Alfândega (customshouse) in the heart of the country’s second largest city. “The decision to create the Immersivus Gallery Lisbon was born following the success of the IGP, which was the first virtual art gallery in the entire country,” said Edoardo Canessa, executive producer for Ocubo. “Technology permitting, our goal is to make it into Portugal’s first truly interactive art experience.”

If these are the first full projection mapping galleries in Portugal, on the other hand Ocubo has a long experience in video mapping on monuments and for events. The company has an active presence in the Asian market, where they realized interactive light shows and videomapping, including the inauguration show for the Al Janoub Stadium in Qatar, but also smaller and more creative projects like Flowing Light, a half pipe skating ramp made into an interactive canvas that reacts to skaters’ movements through color and shapes. 

In Portugal the company has made the news with videomapping shows on all of the country’s major monuments, including the Belem Tower on its 500th anniversary, the University of Coimbra on its 725th anniversary, and the Monastery of Alcobaça (the biggest in the country). It also delivered light shows for events such as the Rock in Rio music festival. Their most famous project to date, though, is Lisbon Under Stars, an immersive multimedia show set up inside the ruins of the Carmo church, telling Portugal’s story through projected images, poetry by Fernando Pessoa, and the voices of famous fado singer Amália Rodrigues, Eurovision winner Salvador Sobral and many others. Lisbon Under Stars has been shown every summer since 2018, and in its first year it was awarded the first place in the “Cultural, Musical and Sporting Event” category at Bea World – The International Festival of Events and Live Communication.

Both the IGP and the IGL are currently showing an installation called “Impressive Monet & Brilliant Klimt” based on the timeless art of those 2 geniuses. “Working with art created by…

Continue reading Games & Parks Industry February 2021, page 34

Photos Courtesy: Ocubo

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