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Pixel Ambience with Chauvet Professional at Vanity Osaka
Japan – With its concrete canyons and bustling crowded streets, Osaka resembles many other big international cities. In terms of culinary excellence though, Japan’s third largest city is in a league of its own. Sometimes called "the food capital of the world", the city, which boasts 108 Michelin restaurant stars, lives by an ethos the Japanese call kuidaore, a joyful gastronomical indulgence. Now with the opening of Vanity Osaka, the city has a nightclub that equals its dining excellence, thanks in no small part to a sweepingly bold lighting design by Michael Meacham that draws upon the brightness, color and pixel mapping capabilities of over 400 fixtures from Chauvet Professional.
Meacham of iDesign Productions (Miami) has designed some of the highest profile clubs in the world. He faced a special challenge when lighting Vanity Osaka. "This is a single level club with both sides of the dance floor elevated for VIP seating, so my design was going to be broad, horizontal and expansive," he said. "The challenge I faced, though, is that there are these huge structural columns that land right in the center of the dance floor."
Instead of trying to "work around" the wide columns, Meacham used EPIX 2.0 bars and EPIX 2.0 strips along with some adroit pixel mapping to incorporate them into his stunning design. "I figured the columns would be a great place to start my design," he said. "Once I started the design utilizing the huge columns on the dance floor, the rest came together quickly. It was a really smooth, fun process."
Fun indeed… it is impossible to see the end result of Meacham’s efforts without being awestruck. His artful pixel mapping and overall lighting design has transformed the Vanity Osaka dance floor into a free flowing, almost cosmological swirl of patterns and colors that instantly envelops visitors, creating a visual experience they aren’t likely to forget.
"My vision for this project was to create an expansive look inside the club," said Meacham. "The idea is to have an intimate lighting and video experience in every direction. We want people to be immersed in the entire space, no matter where they are in the club. Our goal is to create something that surrounds everyone."
As Meacham noted, the creation of this immersive experience started when he used the EPIX 2.0 bars to illuminate the center columns on the dance floor. "The EPIX fixtures on the columns, just flowed so well with the DJ booth and ceiling lighting," he said. "It created a very smooth look."
In addition to the EPIX 2.0 bars and strips on the columns, Meacham built EPIX 2.0 bars into the wall behind the DJ booth and added five configurations of 32 EPIX 2.0 strips each on the ceiling. He also positioned EPIX 2.0 strips behind the frosted glass in the VIP area. The LD accented the EPIX lighted columns with 20 Intimidator Spot LED 350 moving fixtures from Chauvet DJ in four groups of five. Meacham’s design utilizes the motorized focus of the Intimidator Spots to project crisp gobos over the dance floor.
Meacham positioned eight Strike 882 white SMD LED strobe panels with pixel control and special effects macros above the VIP areas on either side of the dance floor. "The Strikes have an impressive big punch, plus the individual pixel cells make for great chasing effects," said the LD.
The pixel mapping capabilities of the Chauvet fixtures was essential to Meacham’s vision for his Vanity Osaka design. When asked to describe his creative vision for this club, the LD simply replied: "Deep abstract video immersion. I wanted to push pixels all over that club!"
Elaborating on that point, Meacham explained: "I love high contrast abstract video. It's much more captivating to use it as moving art and interesting eye candy. There is a lot of color matching between the video and moving lights that gives the guests an exclusive experience that's different than most other clubs. Vanity has an ambience of pixel mapping effects."
The Chauvet fixtures were praised by Meacham for being easy to use with a variety of control options. "I used the grandMA to send DMX out to the Chauvet movers, strobes and hazer," he said. "I also used Arkaos Media Master Pro in fixture mode talking to grandMA via native MA NET with CITP enabled. All the EPIX, including the VIP uplighting, is mapped with Kling-Net. There's a huge video content library set up and by having CITP enabled, it allows the lighting operator to see a still preview of the video in the MA windows."
Meacham’s gear list at Vanity Osaka included 299 EPIX 2.0 strips, 59 EPIX 2.0 bars,
41 EPIX Drive 642s, 8 Strike 882 panels, 12 Q-Wash 419Z-LED RGBW moving yoke fixtures, 20 Intimidator Spot LED 350s and one Amhaze II water-based haze machine.
"The Chauvet fixtures were amazing," said Meacham. "We were very happy with the quality of the Chauvet products that we chose for Vanity. I had used the Intimidator Spot 350 previously in other clubs with great success, but I never used the EPIX series before. The EPIX fixtures worked out perfectly for this design.
"My client was thrilled," continued the LD. "Vanity is one of the most original and unique clubs. There is nothing like it in Osaka." So a city acclaimed for its eateries, now has at least one very special nightclub too.
23rd July 2014
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