The Moody Center, a new 15,000+ seat entertainment venue on the campus of The University of Texas at Austin, opened in April of this year and hosts concerts, men’s and women’s Longhorns basketball games, family events, and much more.
Global architecture firm Gensler designed the venue, which features a 360-degree exterior glass façade, a massive canopy for shade, and an array of dynamic elements to engage and immerse visitors.
One such element is a digital art piece custom-fabricated by Design Communications Ltd. (DCL) with LED video technology by SNA Displays. The display wall, located in the northwest quadrant of the Dell Concourse of the Moody Center, was the result of a design-build collaboration with Gensler’s DXD team in Austin.
DCL first engineered and prototyped large sections of the display wall to resolve a layered assembly of light baffles, diffusive acrylic, and CNC-cut veneer panels to achieve the design team’s desired look and feel.
“Considering the tight configuration of holes cut into the wood veneer panels, SNA Displays’ full-matrix LED video modules were specified as opposed to individual LED pucks because they allowed for infinite versatility in creating content scenarios that aligned with the decorative pattern,” said Jeff Grantz, director of creative technologies at DCL. “Our design team coordinated with SNA Displays to provide a custom mounting structure for the LED cabinets to maximize the unique, artistic diffusion effect.”
The concourse installation features a 10 mm pixel pitch video display from SNA Displays’ BOLD™ Interior product series. At 9 feet-5 inches-tall and 66 feet-2-inches-wide, the video wall is part of an interactive design that incorporates audio and reacts to visitors’ movements.
“One challenge the project presented was discreetly integrating the array of infrared cameras within the wall itself,” said Grantz. “These cameras were used to detect the movements of people in front of the display, enabling Gensler’s team to develop a variety of gesturally interactive animations that help activate the space and engage visitors.”
For the project, SNA Displays customized louver panels so the installation’s perforated cover could be mounted in front of the LED face with a tight fit. The substrate was also designed to be completely removeable so that front service to the LED cabinets was maintained.