Expo 2000 played host to a number of extraordinary pavilions and exhibits, many of which included elaborate and beautiful lighting. One of the most talked-about was "Planet of Visions" (bottom) in which visitors strolled through a Panorama of Utopias offering speculations about life in the future. Elaborate scenery, including skyscrapers, spherical cities, ancient temples, and a flying ship were subject to ever-changing lighting designed by Harry Gladow. The equipment list for the exhibit included Martin MAC 500s, MAC 600s, and PAL 1200s, in addition to units by Strand Lighting, DeSisti, ADB, Wildfire, and others. Equipment for the project was supplied by Procon MultiMedia.
"Planet of Visions" has a number of extraordinary fog effects as well. A cloud appeared over a lake and disappeared in a matter of minutes. Fog issued forth from rocks and shot out of robots who represented citizens of a mechanical utopia. The flying ship, which weighed approximately eight tons, appeared through clouds of fog as well. These effects and others, which played no small part in the exhibit's dreamlike effect, were created by Florian Von Hofen of The Smoke Factory, using his company's equipment (the fog machines were run by the show control program Avenger).
Automated lighting from Martin Professional was used in a number of other exhibits as well. Harry Gladow's designs were also seen in a Sennheiser exhibit dedicated to "The Magic of Sound." MiniMAC Profiles and MX-1 scanners (supplied by Senger + Bombosch) were used in interactive sound and light displays, while a Martin FiberSource was used throughout the exhibit with light generated from a Martin Exterior 600. (Gladow controlled the displays from home, using Martin ShowDesigners and two Martin ProScenium software-based controllers.) The exhibit's interiors were covered by 20 MAC 600s and Pro 400 color changers.
Other Martin projects: In the Canadian pavilion (second from bottom), visitors walked through an exhibit depicting seasonal changes in the Canadian countryside, along a "river" made of 500 screens under a transparent floor. This led to a 360 cinema where 43 MAC 500s and eight MAC 600s were part of a multimedia experience. The entire Monaco pavilion was conceived as a multimedia presentation, using light and mirrored effects. Twenty-five Martin Exterior 600s were used to create a color wash on video projection screens. At the Lithuanian pavilion, visitors took part in a simulated flight, with a number of MAC 600s, 300s, and 500s providing gobo projections on the surface of the simulator (Martin equipment was also supplied to numerous other pavilions, including Australia, Romania, Belgium, UAE, France, and the Bertelsmann organization).
Clay Paky also played a role at Hannover, most notably in the "Scape" project (top two photos), designed by Studio 3 De Luxe with lighting by Oliver Rump, an exhibit that borrowed visuals and ideas from biology and human morphology in a complex display. Twenty-eight Stage Zoom 1200s were used to color and pattern the walls of the exhibit, with 24 Stage Color 300s to create soft color washes that linked different areas together. As the pictures on the page suggest, the effects were truly hallucinogenic.
Aside from the Stage Zoom 1200s and Stage Color 300s, the equipment list for the project included 12 Stage Scans, eight Stage Color 1200s, one Astroraggi Power, 118 ETC Source Fours, 60 Rainbow 8" Pro color changers, 100 Color Kinetics iColor Coves, three Color Kinetics multi-output power sources, one MA Lighting GrandMA console, one ETC Expression 3 console, three ETC Sensor rack dimmers, and trussing by Eurotruss. Equipment was supplied by Lightpower.
There are those who say that the days of such international expositions are numbered, given the rise of the Internet and other high-speed forms of communication. That may or may not be so, but, in the meantime, they provide a fantastic canvas for the use of entertainment design.