Combining the annual Illuminate Festival with the global launch of Mayflower 400, the town of Harwich turned to Motion Mapping as eyes from all around the world tuned in to mark the historic beginnings of modern America.

What the client wanted

Harwich’s annual Illuminate Festival is always a cause for the whole town to celebrate, but 2019 signified something even more special. It was to be the first stop for the worldwide launch of Mayflower 400. Culminating in 2020, it would mark 400 years since the famed ship embarked from England with America’s founding Pilgrim Fathers on board.

With the Mayflowers Captain Christopher Jones’ home situated on the waterfront of the town and the festival of light taking place right beside his historic residence, Harwich saw the perfect opportunity to combine these two celebrations to make one iconic occasion.

The truly global event meant that all eyes would be on Harwich, and Motion Mappings innovative touch would help honour both the town and the voyage that shaped modern America.

Our concept

With events taking place throughout Harwich, a tour-de-force of cutting-edge mapping and projection technology would show off the Illuminate Festival at its very best. A light wall would dazzle the awaiting public and the use of Hologauze to create seamless 3D holographic images would add a transformative, futuristic feel to the evening.

The centrepiece would be the large-scale projection mapping of the buildings overlooking the heart of the occasion.  A mixture of 15k & 25K Lumen Epson projectors paired with the ever-reliable Green Hippo servers would provide clarity, colour and brilliance to the waterfront buildings of the Pier Hotel and Captain Jones’ house.

With exhilarating light displays, branded content from the festival and the Mayflower 400 project, as well as nautical imagery and projection firework displays, the crowd would be treated to wows comparable to those seeing the shores of the New World for the first time 400 years ago.

The result

Harwich really did become a sea of light and we’re delighted to have played our part. Weaving the latest technology into this historic location at a time of great celebration worked perfectly. The visuals on the projection mapped buildings looked flawless and we always love to delight a crowd with one of our signature digital firework displays.

The onlookers, media and those we worked with from Tendring Council alike were all captivated by the eclectic and versatile nature of the light, sound and colour that filled their town. And what a way to reveal Captain Jones’ house, preparing to open to the public for the very first time. We’re sure the incredible legacy of the Mayflower and its Captain were honoured in a spectacular fashion fitting of their accomplishments!

What the client said

A spokesperson from Tendring Council said: ‘Tendring District Council has worked with Motion Mapping on a number of successful events within the Events Team and Theatre Team and have been highly satisfied with the service provided’

‘A very professional company, who were informative throughout the whole planning process working to our budgets and tight deadlines to produce a high-quality event. We would be happy to work with them on future projects.’

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