Biomuseo

AV Technology Provides a Bridge to Exploring Panama’s Biodiversity
Panama City, Panama

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Situated on the Amador Causeway at the entrance to the Panama Canal, the Biomuseo is one of the most unique museums in the world, offering eight permanent art and science galleries on the origin of the isthmus and its impact on the planet’s biodiversity. Electrosonic designed, fabricated and installed audio-visual systems for the museum in what is Latin America’s only Frank Gehry-designed building.

Biomuseo

Exterior photo by Esdras Jaimes, Panama

Electrosonic’s Design Consulting team worked with Kubik Inc, the project design/build and management group, on the development of each gallery, whose fabrication and installation ultimately changed little over time.

Biomuseo

The first five galleries, based on the original concept design provided by Bruce Mau Design, flow in a sequential manner much like a queue line. Visitors enter at the Gallery of Biodiversity where an explosion of life immediately captures their attention. On the walls, a nine-panel LCD monitor system is stacked horizontally and vertically in custom frames. A looping montage of flora and fauna, with ambient surround sound, is synchronized by a Dataton WATCHOUT system so the monitors can display breathtaking individual content or portions of a sweeping single image.

Biomuseo

The gallery leads to the appropriately titled Panamarama Theatre, a three-story, cube-shaped projection space where ten screens, on all sides and above and below a glass ceiling and floor, immerse visitors in the natural wonders of the country’s ecosystems. Guests watch as stunning nature cinematography shows marching leaf cutter ants, a lush jungle trail, a down river sailing expedition, a beautiful Pacific Ocean beach and the underwater domain of whales.

With none of the screens being parallel or perpendicular, Electrosonic used projectors and custom mirror bounce mechanisms to display the images. The image playback, along with warping, masking, positioning and audio playback, was accomplished with a custom 10-channel 7thSense HD server. A Medialon touch panel manages visitor flow and show operation.

Biomuseo

The Panamarama Theatre exits into Building the Bridge, which explains how tectonic forces formed the isthmus. The gallery is dominated by three 34-foot high rock formations with accompanying interactives on geological topics. The last gallery, Worlds Collide, examines the exchange of species between North and South America when a stampede of animals began almost 3 million years ago. Life-size white models of the creatures – from otters to mammoths – fill the space along with interactives built into the architectural structure. Richard Lewis Media Group provided the interactives for these galleries.

Biomuseo

Audio gear for the Biomuseo includes digital signal processors, amplifiers local to exhibits and a custom 24-channel audio playback system, which offers maximum flexibility in audio distribution and playback across the entire museum. The control room equipment racks are laid out in parallel rows of three racks. Audio Foto PRO provided local installation services for the project.