Another Big Robotic Video Wall Surfaces, But This One’s Safe Inside, And Done With Projection

March 4, 2021 by Dave Haynes

Here’s another example of one of those robotic, kinetic, three-dimensional walls that has cubes that push out and slide back in based on programmed sequences.

It is is the same motion technology as what was used for that ill-fated Coca-Cola spectacular LED display in Times Square, but the biggest difference with this one is that it is inside. That makes it exponentially easier to manage and maintain, because rain, snow, airborne grime and wind are not all conspiring to jam or lock up the moving parts.

The other big difference is that instead of being fronted by LED modules, this surface is non-digital and used as a projection canvas.

The Wall, as it is called, is in the atrium of Japan’s Kogakuin University. It comes to life using a Christie laser projector, for the video mapping.

Says Christie in PR about the project:

Jointly delivered and installed in Shinjuku Atrium by Ushio Lighting Inc. and CIMA Co., Ltd., with planning and direction accomplished by P.I.C.S. Co., Ltd., the Christie D4K40-RGB delivers big, bright and bold images on the mapping area that includes a “kinetic wall” measuring 16 meters in width and 8.5 meters in height.

This “kinetic wall” features 180 modular cubes, each measuring 40 cm, that can be programmed to move back and forth individually. Creative expressions ranging from a highly dynamic wall surface, large-scale and 3D projection mapping, as well as data visualization can be achieved using a combination of video, audio and lighting effects.

“There is a characteristic open ceiling space up to the 4th floor of the atrium and it is a place that reflects the ideas of Kogakuin University, which allows members of each faculty to express themselves experimentally, as well as generate new ideas and concepts,” says a university spokesperson. “This ‘kinetic wall’ is an extension of this creative process, and through the combination of various technologies such as 3D projection mapping, new life and energy can be injected into our renewed campus.”

Here’s a video …

It’s an interesting project. Just about every 3D visual, or maybe not even just about, could be done just in the creative, negating the need for the robotic components and their upkeep. Something with what amounts to 180 drawers sliding in and out will need steady attention.

But the moving cubes thing is visually interesting, even when not the subject of projections. I also like how the creatives play with different shapes on the surrounding projection surface that is not “active.”

  1. Rein says:

    I’m curious how much mechanical noise this contributes to the space. Are these mechanisms relatively quiet?

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