I just got back last week from Barcelona, Spain – I was over at EIBTM 2012 for CAST; we're exhibiting the Vivien suite and showed some wysiwyg to some folks. In this respect, that's unimportant. What is important is the fact that I have never been to a show where there was such a potential for lighting design greatness than I have when I saw the show floor at EIBTM.
First – this show is absolutely jam packed and crazy. Good crazy, mind you — this is a large show completely filling the Fira Gran Via Barcelona, which is a big, beautiful hall:
There are stand after stand of countries marketing to Event and Meeting Professionals and hoteliers and all kinds of really corporate stuff — 5-star hotel chains showing their best properties, city and country travel and tourism bureaus hocking their destinations as the "in" place to come for a particular event/meeting/what-have-you, and there is a lot of really tremendous design there — glass and wood, real plants, just and amazing display of crafstmanship. Even our stand, a 10X20 over in the Technology Pavilion, had puttied and painted corners and generally looked sleek and nice. There was one thing missing from most of these displays, and there were some magnificently enormous displays…
…the touch of a Lighting Designer.
There is amazing opportunity here, people — perhaps it's time to start putting together some proposals and sending out some resumes, yeah? Even though this is not (I repeat not) a lighting trade show by any stretch of the imagination, some of these countries' displays could really benefit from the touch of a lighting designer. Countries like Estonia, my favorite stand even though not the largest, could really benefit from some nice programming and sequencing to best fit their country's appearance. There is something so elegant about having the calculated eye of an LD to put some real pizzazz into something so important as hundreds of millions of dollars of potential revenue, if not exponentials of that figure.
This is not to say that they didn't have the services of a lighting designer, but to me it did not appear as though an LD had given a lot of input other than GI (general illumination) in many of these cases. Also keep in mind I'm a critical bastard who looks intensely at these things, and from a different perspective than any one of the attendees of this show — it's just not what the show is about at all, it's about destinations, events, meetings, and all of the revenue that goes along with that industry. BUT, to the right LD, one of these stands could be a playground of immense proportions!
A few random teasers — there is a gallery at the bottom of the post with everything and anything from this trip!
Entering into the Fira Gran Via Barcelona for the show:
Spain's EIBTM booth:
Denmark's EIBTM booth:
Holland's EIBTM booth:
Oh yeah, and Barcelona! It was my first time in Spain, but I have to report that I only got to enjoy one really great meal and a bunch of hotel and convention floor food, I had the show on top of a beta program going on and writing documentation for said release. I got a lot of cell phone shots of various locations around Barcelona, but I was busy from sun-up to sundown and didn't really get much of a chance to enjoy Barcelona. Sorry, Barcelona! Maybe next time! My Dad says you're pretty cool, though. La Barca del Salamanca is one awesome awesome awesome restaurant in Olympic Village along the water in Barcelona, there are some shots in the gallery of the amazing meal we had there with Corbin Ball! Thanks Corbin, I had a blast!
Every street a different set of panels, but every street had them about every ten meters for miles.
The Maitre d' un-crusting the salt from our sea bass at La Barca del Salamanca!
This image below was so awesome – this was a stone statue of a woman and child that was sitting by the Fira Gran Via loading dock entrance. It's obviously very old, but it was just so excellent to see this stone woman standing guard with her child over the loading dock. I love stuff like that.
Click on any image thumb below and open up the Gallery view!