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Look who’s talking in Cathedral Square

Wednesday, August 07, 2019   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: arts, information

Christchurch City Council Newsline: 7th August 2019

“Wood” you talk to the trees in Cathedral Square if you could?

The city’s latest interactive installation will light up your life, if you enjoy a trunk pun or prefer to branch out into tree-related jokes or learn about special city spots.

The “Talking Trees” concept in the Square’s Godley Reserve is the brainchild of local creative Tim Budgen, and is supported by the Christchurch City Council’s Enliven Places programme.

Lighting up the city to make it a place for people is a key theme of the Central City Action Plan and these “talking” animated faces projected onto trees encourage people to stop and enjoy.

Mr Budgen is the Motion Design Team Leader at Ara. He has created the light and sound installation, working with several Bachelor of Design students.

“The work has evolved from our video projection installation for Botanic D’Lights last year,” he says.

“Our earlier version was designed to entertain families with puns and ‘dad jokes’ as they moved through the Botanic Gardens.

“I have worked with our senior Motion Design students to produce the latest installation for Cathedral Square, utilising my background in animation for projection and live events.”

The “talking trees” will provide plenty of fun and jokes, along with information on popular central city places.

Council Head of Urban Design, Regeneration and Heritage Carolyn Ingles says the Talking Trees installation is a “clever but simple approach to interaction”.

“The installation provokes a laugh and a smile while also reminding its audience that there are some special spaces to visit in the central city,” Ms Ingles says.

“It encourages people to connect with the changing city environment.”

Meanwhile, the Gobo Lighting Trail will weave through the central city from early next month.

The gobos are small templates inside a projector that will shine down on footpaths from their lamp-post perches - projecting 10 striking designs that showcase some of the city’s most-treasured sites.

The designs have been selected from more than 120 entries, with the winners receiving a $100 central city voucher.

The competition theme was: “What I love about Christchurch”.

“The Gobo Trail features prominent city buildings, nature, people, poems, and a famous symbol of Christchurch’s recovery – traffic cones,” Ms Ingles says.

Healthy Christchurch Champions

  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ngai Tahu
  • NZ Police
  • Pegasus Health
  • University of Otago, Christchurch