The prestigious ambiance of the Mercedes-Benz Gallery in Paris attracts visitors to explore this essential showcase of the famous German marque. Presentations of the latest models in the range, themed exhibitions, special events - just about everything is possible in this 500 m2 space where eco-friendly materials take pride of place and where Martin Professional lighting plays an intriguing, seductive role.
This new space perpetuates the historic presence of Mercedes on the Champs Elysées but with an eye to the future. An international showcase for the marque, the Mercedes-Benz Gallery displays all the savoir-faire of the German firm. More than two million people visit this welcoming, modern, interactive space every year - some love the marque, others innovation, competition, or vintage cars – and some all four!
The atmosphere in the Mercedes-Benz Gallery is both welcoming and luxurious. As lighting plays a decisive role in producing this effect by creating an ambiance to match the nature of the exhibitions, 16 MAC Aura™ LED wash lights from Martin Professional were consequently installed at the beginning of April 2012. Part of a permanent installation, programs can be altered to highlight new events with changeover approximately every two months. The initial specification was straightforward: highlight the vehicles and make it possible to change the effect at different times of day and night - a dynamic daytime program, followed by ‘disco’ in the evening and economy after nightfall.
The installation was produced by the company All Events, which has used tight timing, programming and a careful montage to the great satisfaction of the Gallery’s managers. Franck Grizard, the project manager, explains how the installation came about: “We had to propose a new lighting solution for two exhibition areas which had problems on several levels: the lack of brightness with the system previously installed, plus the need for a lot of maintenance. Although the new lighting was to be designed for functional highlighting of the vehicles, we had to find a system that could provide a dynamic, promotional dimension.” The first set of MAC Auras (8) was installed at the front of the showroom to highlight the vehicle on display to the public along the Avenue des Champs Elysées. The second set (8) was placed above the first vehicle as this space has no natural lighting. From a more technical point of view, the projectors were integrated in the existing niches, replacing the previous lighting. The MAC Auras were then suspended by threaded rods and secured by slings, and arranged in figure 8’s in the ceiling above the vehicles.
However, not everything was so simple, as Franck Grizard explains: “The difficulty of this installation lay essentially in connecting up to the mains. The store system mainly incorporates light walls, whose flow is generated by LED bars. The result is a large number of DMX universes (5) with several zones. It was therefore necessary to incorporate 16 MAC Auras in these universes without having to take the DMX through the whole store.”
Colors and effects
Cédric Lebreton, the Mercedes-Benz Paris marketing manager, explains why MAC Auras were selected: “These projectors can produce many effects, and to the best of my knowledge are the only ones that can provide a visual display of such fine colors. They also have very low consumption and, last but not least, the quality of Martin products is naturally an additional guarantee of reliability.”
Franck Grizard, who worked on the installation and all the programming, is also enthusiastic about the MAC Aura: “This is a small, lightweight product, with low consumption and requiring very little maintenance. In addition, it provides beautiful colors with splendid whites and a lot of flow as well as interesting visual effects. It’s a really good product, which is easy to install and offers a very wide range of uses.”
The MAC Aura is the first LED wash with zoom, offering the new Aura effect, a real treat for the eyes. It also operates as a high-performance wash light with a single lens and pre-mixed colors. Its cutting-edge optical system combines multi-colored LEDs with an aura of color in the background producing a new palette of visual effects which removes the synthetic effect of the LED for more unique lighting concepts.
Modernism and a promotional dimension
Thanks to the installation of the MAC Auras, All Events has been able to revitalize the store by creating a light signal to the outside world. This means that the atmosphere of the showroom can evolve all year round in line with developments in the German marque. Cédric Lebreton is delighted with the new configuration: “The finished article meets our expectations perfectly. The product is particularly complete in terms of programming possibilities even though we haven’t yet mastered all its functionalities. The MAC Aura has given our showroom a different, more modern, more promotional dimension. Thanks to this new installation, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of visitors to the Mercedes-Benz Gallery.”
Cédric Lebreton - Mercedes: Mercedes-Benz Paris Marketing Manager.
Fabrice Lajus – All events: Founder manager of the company All events
Franck Grizard – All events: Project manager – installation, programming.