30. January 2018
The grisly Danse Macabre, the Dance of Death, was a common yet dark motif of medieval European religious art. Typically depicting haunting carnivals of leering, dancing skeletons, these provocative representations acted as reminders that death and judgment came to all, whether princess or pauper, bishop or blacksmith. Found all across Europe, an exciting example has recently been discovered in La Hougue Bie on the Channel Island of Jersey. Centre Screen are excited to be part of the project to restore this important artistic work.
Last week, producer Laura Harris and motion graphics designer Joel Hepworth flew to Jersey to carry out projection tests of our AV dealing with the fragment of the mediaeval frieze found on the chapel’s walls.
As well as explaining the historic, religious and artistic background of this sinister artwork, the film will offer a glimpse into the life of the colourful cleric behind the chapel who was possibly responsible for the frieze. And it will end by showing what the Danse Macabre might have looked like in its heyday, with specially-commissioned illustrations brought to life by Joel and the Centre Screen design team.
It’s delivered via a projector hidden in a church lectern, crafted by our project partners at DJW to blend in perfectly with the surroundings. Last week’s task was to ensure that our illustrations line up properly with the original, mediaeval art. So far, it’s looking good – visitors will be able to judge for themselves when the exhibit opens to the public later this year.
Medieval art and contemporary technology.
The chapel stands above a Neolithic ritual mound.
16. January 2018
Image design by Carla Janssen-Höfelt, © DIVA.
Another exciting new project underway! We’re delighted to announce that we’re working with Netherlands’ exhibition developers and producers Bruns B.V. on the creation of DIVA, the Museum of Diamonds, Jewellery and Silverware in Antwerp. Producer Dave Thompson tells us more about the project and our collaboration with Bruns, DIVA, Belgium-based multimedia experts CREATE and Belgian filmmaker Mario de Munck.
“In partnership with DIVA we’re developing a suite of filmic programs and multimedia interactive installations to open a window into the history of diamonds and precious metals. Our contributions will guide visitors through the hidden world of diamond collectors, uncovering the people and stories connected to this high-price, high-risk trade. Engaging personal stories will be compounded by informative interactive elements bringing objects to life.”
The Museum will progress through the world of the collector, into the workshops, and onto the globe-spanning trade network. Personal histories will be expanded through social histories, through representations of opulent dining rooms and boudoirs. And the sometimes-murky provenance of diamonds and other precious metals will be explored through stories of robbery, deceit and counterfeiting in ‘The Vault.’
We’ll be sharing more details in the run-up to the grand opening on the 5 & 6 May, 2018.
19. December 2017
We’d like to take this opportunity to wish a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a successful New Year to all our clients, colleagues and collaborators. We’ve had a busy, exciting, eventful 2017 – working on projects as far afield as the United States, Singapore and the Arabian Gulf, and closer to home in Cork, Kilkenny, Connemara, Lincolnshire and London.
It has become an office tradition to donate to a local charity rather than send Christmas cards. This year we have decided collectively to support Manchester Action on Street Health.
We hope you have a wonderful holiday, and look forward to working together in 2018.
The Centre Screen Team.
17. November 2017
Centre Screen are excited to announce that Downton Abbey: The Exhibition opens in New York this week. The exhibition, produced by NBCUniversal International Studios with designers Mather & Co, features extensive audio-visual and interactive installations created by Centre Screen, and takes fans of the television phenomenon on an immersive journey through the stories, characters, production and real-life history behind Downton Abbey.
Centre Screen’s installations include large-screen character portraits, immersive projections and soundscapes, animated guides on dressing and social etiquette, and even virtual career guidance for would-be Downton staff members.
There’s a particular pride for the two centrepieces – The Library & Drawing Room, and Goodbye from Downton. The Library & Drawing Room is an immersive, animated life-size room whose projected walls come alive as they draw visitors into their stories. And Goodbye from Downton is a large-scale projection featuring newly-shot footage with stars of the show, including Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern, Jim Carter and Phyllis Logan.
The whole visitor experience is tied together by a tablet-based interactive guide. Featuring bespoke app development, this multimedia guide brings extra depth to the dozens of props, costumes and memorabilia on display, as well as offering exclusive video interviews with cast and crew.
The exhibition opened in Singapore in June 2017 before embarking on a planned itinerary including major cities in the USA, Canada and Australia. The exhibition has received enthusiastic reviews from the press, from fans, and from the cast, with Phyllis Logon, Downton Abbey’s well-loved Mrs Hughes, responding,
“I got quite emotional… It felt like it had its own life. There was real heart to it.”
Downton Abbey: The Exhibition opens in New York on 18th November 2017. More details from http://www.downtonexhibition.com/
And a great review here from the New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/16/arts/design/downton-abbey-the-exhibition-manhattan.html
*Ok, ok – Broadway is officially midtown, not uptown, and the venue is officially off-Broadway, but it’s New York and we’re excited.
5. September 2017
Centre Screen are excited to announce big changes to the way our London studio will be operating from the autumn. This week we say goodbye to our Shoreditch office, and begin a new, more flexible approach to our business in the capital.
Cloud-based production apps, video-call meetings, and superfast broadband mean we can think again about how we work in London, and we’ve used the opportunity as a springboard to make some clever operational changes. We will be retaining a bricks and mortar hub in Spitalfield’s Second Home, but client presentations and creative meetings can be held – well, where ever we want them to be held, and where ever best suits our clients and our collaborators. Whether we’re meeting at our new hub, over coffee in Bermondsey or The Museum Quarter, or presenting in a Soho cinema space, this new approach promises flexibility to adapt to current and future projects. It’s a hybrid form of organising that allows us to meet our clients’ needs, while giving our established ‘creative collective’ of London-based collaborators the 21st century flexibility and autonomy they deserve.
From a client perspective, the transition will be seamless. We remain committed to a high-level presence in the capital, and Executive Producer and Company Director Lisa O’Neill will continue to lead new and ongoing collaborations in London, guaranteeing an agile, dedicated response to the needs of clients, both nationally and internationally.
Similarly, it’s business as usual up north in Manchester with our in-house team, and Executive Producer and Company Director Hayley Walsh and Finance Director Trevor Hayes overseeing production, operations, and back-office functions.
We look forward to working with you in the future as we have in the past, and if you have any questions or would like to meet up in London, Manchester, or anywhere else for that matter, then we’d love you to get in touch!
24. March 2017
We’re delighted to announce exciting developments here at Centre Screen. As part of our long-term strategy to preserve the company’s creative standards and quality of service, a management buyout has been agreed with longstanding employees and Company Directors Hayley Walsh, Lisa O’Neill and Finance Director Trevor Hayes. All three of them have been an integral part of Centre Screen for many years and have been working together most recently as the core leadership team of our studios in Manchester and London.
Founders Dave Postlethwaite and Paul Kucharski will continue to work very closely with Hayley, Lisa and Trevor to ensure that the values and culture instilled when they founded Centre Screen in 1986 will remain at the company’s heart. They’re delighted that the business is moving forward with a new generation of leaders who know the business, staff and clients so well and who are perfectly placed to build on the longstanding reputation Centre Screen has as one of the world’s leading producers of digital media and audio visual communication.
Founded over 30 years ago, Centre Screen has seen its work featured in locations including the Sydney Tower Australia, the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, the Tower of London, The National Museum of Oman, Stonehenge Visitors Centre and, opening soon, the House of European History in Brussels. The management buyout, as Dave Postlethwaite explains, will preserve the ethos of creative excellence and professionalism behind these successes. “The exciting thing for me is that Centre Screen will remain a private independent business answerable only to its staff and clients – a creative force that remains energised and focused on serving its clients in an intensely personalised and focused way.”
3. November 2016
The curtain has gone up on one of our latest projects: The Play’s the Thing – the Royal Shakespeare Company’s permanent exhibition at its home in Stratford-upon-Avon. It’s been fun and challenging, and we’ve enjoyed working with The Hub, Kossmann.dejong, Darius Wilson Associates, and DJ Willrich. But, as with every theatrical production, before the doors opened to the public, the press got a preview of the show.
And their verdict? “A hit – a very palpable hit!” (Hamlet, Act V, Sc. 2).
What’s On chose our interactive version of (RSC Artistic Director) Gregory Doran’s desk as one of their highlights, and described the exhibition as:
“…not just for the die-hards: The Play’s The Thing is both a brilliant introduction for the uninitiated, and a great way for fans to find out more about the process of staging Shakespeare…presented in a fun, accessible style that’s sure to spark the imaginations of kids and grown-ups alike.”
The Evening Standard praised the exhibition’s interactivity, finding it…
”…agreeably hands-on… the real highlight is a virtual costume store that uses Wii (it was Kinect, actually – CS) technology to let us don a range of RSC clobber. I pranced around in John Gielgud’s cloak and hose from the 1950 production of Much Ado About Nothing.”
And the Telegraph – which also enjoyed our costume interactive – was impressed by the exhibition’s ability both…
“…to introduce a new generation of children to Shakespeare; and to offer enough to beguile adult fans… for children, the digital aspects will unquestionably be the winners.”
If you’d like to see for yourself, tickets are now on sale online or at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon. And if you’d like to know more about Centre Screen’s work on this or any other project – please get in touch!
11. October 2016
It’s always good to get feedback on our work – and the most important comments of all are the ones we get from the visitors who actually see, hear and touch our installations.
[photo credit: ©Museum of London]
Which is why we’re particularly pleased with the responses that the Museum of London were kind enough to pass on to us, from visitors who enjoyed their Great Fire of London exhibition – Fire! Fire! – designed by Skellon Studio – and our AV and interactive multimedia installations.
Here’s what a few of them had to say…
“…delighted with everything I saw… It was innovative and imaginative…”
“I spent two hours there and was very sorry when I suddenly found myself at the exit!… I am recommending it to all my friends!”
“… great for kids and really immersive… well done on a great experience.”
“I’ve seen other attempts at interactive displays in museums, but nothing as imaginative and effective as what you pulled off.”
“Hats off to you! We left with smiles on our faces.”
If you’d like to find out more about this, or any other of our projects – past, present or future – then please get in touch!
[photo credit: ©Museum of London]
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