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Museum of Food and Drink Highlights Chinese American Food in New Exhibit

Exhibit features unique automotive installation with surround projection mapping for full immersion and customizable user experience with an interactive iOS application.

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Just when you thought you’d seen and heard of everything, the Museum of Food and Drink is building the world’s first large-scale interactive space with exhibits you can eat. Its newest experience is called “Chow,” which celebrates the birth and evolution of Chinese-American cuisine in the past 170 years. The exhibit opened Nov. 6 and will continue this year.

The centerpiece of the space is Vox Creative’s latest experiential installation, including the first-ever 2017 INFINITI QX30 premium active crossover. Visitors can utilize the interactive iOS application podium to select a culinary journey through one of five cities: Jackson Heights of Queens; Chinatown of Manhattan; Crown Heights of Brooklyn; Chicago and San Jose, Calif.

San Francisco-based creative design agency All of it Now used Epson large venue Z-Series high-lumen projectors for the exhibit. Chow uses the car’s glass windows as a canvas, profiling important dishes and restaurants that contribute to each neighborhood’s culture.

The Museum of Food and Drink (MOFAD) is a non-profit organization “dedicated to advancing public understanding of the culture, history, science, production and commerce of food and drink,” according to the group’s website. MOFAD creates exhibits and hosts an array of public programs, including cooking classes, guided tastings, hands-on workshops, science demonstrations, discussions and seminars.

All of it Now created a screen on the curved structure of a car, presenting various challenges solved through advancing graphics and projection technology. To create an immersive environment, All of it Now staffers transformed the automobile front and side windows into vibrant HD displays.

This was particularly challenging due to the need for frame synchronization between displays, as well as the computational requirements for a combined resolution output of 5760 x 1080 using three Epson Pro Z10000 projectors. The environment has high ambient light and the exhibit required the flexibility of lensing and image adjustment to minimize space requirements.

 The white units blended into the venue’s decor, creating museum-grade installations without distraction.

 All of it Now developed a custom iOS application for the project, allowing users to pick one of five locations, giving additional information about each location, as well as acting as a control surface for the user to activate each experience. The app records daily usage metrics and offers lead generation when the user requests additional sales materials.

The application was developed to be cross-platform so any type of mobile, tablet or computer device (iOS, Android, OSX, Windows, etc.) can view the application without limitations on formatting or behavior.

The contrast between interactive automotive projection and culinary history is a striking parallel to the tension in New York between rapid technological innovation and deep rooted traditions. The Museum of Food and Drink serves as an ideal host to exhibits illustrating the rich culture of Chinese American cuisine.