Creating an Unforgettable Physical Space Through Technology

But when it comes to developing impressive in-person experiences, the physical space matters, too — especially for museums, immersive art installations , and pop-up experiences. When deployed well, implements like technology-enhanced event lighting, 360 projection mapping , and mixed reality displays can enrich a space for a vibrant brand experience like no other. 

We’ve previously detailed how leveraging novel technology elevates brand experiences by offering audiences more engaging and interactive content. In particular, handheld devices have allowed marketers to make unique brand experiences readily accessible via augmented reality (AR), Snapchat filters, and second-screen engagement.

So what are these different tools, and how can you use them to transform your space? Let’s dig in.

Creative event lighting

Sure, beautiful lighting enhances any space, but if it stays the same throughout an entire event, it can get boring. When the “wow factor” is what you’re after, consider installing interactive lighting. This can take the form of crowd-responsive, sound-responsive, movement-responsive, and/or remote-controlled lighting, where attendees engage with the lighting itself.

COGNITION played with interactive lighting to great success during an activation for Adidas created to engage young professional soccer players. A full-scale soccer skill drill game leveraged dynamic intelligent lighting to trigger an overhead light display that served as a visual cue for the pace players should set. It resulted in a system that allowed the athletes to track their progress against a pro athlete in real-time as they ran the course. Friendly competition was encouraged by posting the top 10 times of the day on a digital leaderboard.

Projection mapping for events

With 360 projection mapping, marketers can create an immersive experience that envelops attendees in a physical space without bulky VR headsets. Projection mapping uses video projectors to display light and images onto irregularly shaped surfaces — think: buildings, cars, interior spaces, and natural landscapes — to turn common 3D objects into interactive displays.

Projection mapping is a choice option if you don’t want to tackle the deployment of AR or virtual reality (VR) but still want to engross your audience. It can make art installations highly immersive, allowing attendees to feel like they’re “inside” the art.

One example of 360 projection mapping is the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibition. The tech transforms the exhibit’s venue into a canvas, mapping walls, pillars and floors with famous artworks like Starry Night, Sunflowers, and The Bedroom to give guests the feeling of walking into a painting by the post-impressionist Dutch artist.

There are endless ways for this tech to be deployed and experienced. For example, travel and tourism brands can offer potential jet-setters a 360-degree view of a destination before they visit — people can step into a domed room and be surrounded by the aurora borealis in Iceland, or a pride of lions in Tanzania’s Serengeti.

Mixed reality displays

Mixed Reality (MR) is another technology that can turn a physical space into a memorable brand experience. Mixed reality displays blend the physical and virtual worlds via holographic devices that layer virtual features on top of real-world surroundings.

Unlike AR, which overlays real images with virtual ones on a device screen, or VR, which requires a headset that blocks out a user’s physical environment, MR allows users to experience their actual environment while also interacting with the overlaid graphics.

A few examples of MR include “virtual mirrors” that let users see how things like clothes and makeup would look on their body without ever having to undress or uncap a lipstick — perfect for retail popups — and museum exhibits that “come to life” with animated reenactments of historical events.


The only real limit to transforming a physical space into an unforgettable brand experience is your imagination. With technology like event lighting, 360 projection mapping, and mixed reality displays, brands can create a stunning experience guests won’t soon forget.

At COGNITION, we can make your space come alive. Our interactive studio crafts brand experiences that use creative technology based in human empathy. We blend the physical world with the virtual for interactive experiences that evoke awe, wonder, and curiosity.

CTA: Need to transform a physical space with powerful tech? Get in touch with COGNITION.

META: Here’s how to use event lighting, 360 projection mapping, and mixed reality displays to transform a physical space into an immersive in-person brand experience.

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