Miniature Moscow at Urban Forum 2017


If there is one thing that artists from all over the world agree on, it is that they can do their best work when they are given as much creative freedom as possible. An impressive example for this could be observed at this year’s Moscow Urban Forum which took place in July. Russian agency Inty had an immense amount of liberty for the concept of the 250-square meter space for the City of Moscow and filled it with astonishing media installations.

The goal of the Moscow City Government was to demonstrate on their booth the many measures that are necessary to keep the city alive and well - energy supply, waste cycles, recreational areas, transportation and all the invisible parts of an urban infrastructure. How this goal was to be achieved was up to the agency. “We have worked with the City of Moscow for about four years,” explained Alexander Volkov of Inty. “They trust that we will come up with the best concept to communicate their message.”

Inty`s idea was to make the invisible infrastructure visible for the user. They set up a miniature Moscow on an LED floor panel of almost 4 by 4 meters. Over 9,000 plexiglass objects were carefully placed, some of them simple cubes, others resembling known architectural landmarks, such as the Kremlin or the television tower. Via a touchscreen in front of the installation, visitors were able to select a topic of interest. The LED floor panel would then highlight the corresponding hotspots and mark the infrastructure paths across the city.

“In the beginning, we planned to design our Moscow model true to scale,” said Alex. “But we quickly realized that this would leave too much open space – after all, Moscow is a humongous city. Instead we decided to stylize the map and use only 45 and 90-degree angles for objects and lines. This left us with a good-looking and easy to use layout.”

To display more detailed information on all topics, Inty also installed a hanging projection cube above the miniature city. Eight projectors powered by 4 Ventuz servers illuminated the inner sides of the cube – a total resolution of 10,160 by 790 pixels. When a certain topic was selected, the cube stated numbers and statistics and gave insight into the organizational structure of the topic. The content consisted of 12 parts with a total of 70 individual slides.

In addition to this, Inty equipped the Moscow booth with two video walls. One of them showed facts and figures about the city: power consumption, number of accidents and much more. The numbers were integrated into the Ventuz project via an Excel-file and could therefore be changed during the event.

The other video wall depicted the life of an archetype Moscow citizens. To give this installation a personal touch, Inty organized a day of filming with three actors and implemented their videos into the content. In standby mode, the actors invited visitors to step closer to the wall. Once they were recognized by motion detection devices, the presentation started and showed many interesting facts, like the number of electronic devices owned by the average Moscow citizen.

With a total production time of only two months, Inty relied heavily on the fast content creation workflows of Ventuz. For example, the core logic of the miniature city plus projection cube was developed in only two days. “We could not have done it this quickly without Ventuz”, claimed Alex. But most importantly, the customer was thrilled with the outcome. The lavish use of their exhibition space combined with the sophisticated multimedia installations offered the perfect environment for official press events and speeches.

Moscow Urban Forum hanging projection cube above the installationMoscow Urban Forum visitors interacting with miniature Moscow model on an LED floor panelMoscow Urban Forum event assistant showing a visitor how to steer the installation using a touchscreenMoscow Urban Forum large videowall displaying facts ad figures about the cityMoscow Urban Forum large videowall with three models triggered by motion detection