Venue: Zouk Genting Highlands
Location: Genting Highlands, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Manufacturers: LEDSCONTROL, Spain / MADRIX, Germany / HERA LED, Turkey / Acme, China / EK Lights, China / Minuit Une, France / Elation Professional, USA / Martin Lighting, USA / MA Lighting, Germany / Smoke Factory, Germany / MagicFX, The Netherlands / Void Acoustics, UK
Distributors: E&E, Singapore / D8 Digital Aid Sdn Bhd, Malaysia
Installers: LEDSCONTROL, Spain
Architects: Quirk & Associates Sdn Bhd, Malaysia
Lighting / Visual Designers: LEDSCONTROL, Spain
Acousticians: AV Technology Sdn Bhd, Malaysia
After completing the lighting and set design of Zouk Singapore in 2016, our LEDSCONTROL team was asked by the Genting Group to create a new concept for their new Zouk at Genting Highlands, Kuala Lumpur. Taking their plan to create a series of music clubs worldwide into consideration, we decided to consider Zouk Singapore as their headquarters and developed the concept of creating a network of connected spaces and experiences, which are recognizable for their visual uniqueness and where people have the desire to belong.
We imagine Zouk as a global brand, with their clubs being part of the same family, but at the same time each with its own identity within the group. That is why we decided to continue with the UFO concept, evolving our initial approach and finding new solutions as well as an updated look and feel. We had the idea of movement and migration in our head; turning a flock of birds, that moves from one country to another, into a squadron of spaceships.
We built 3 lighting sculptures with a sci-fi design from scratch: a mothership (6 meters in diameter) and two squadships (3 meters in diameter). All of the elements were custom made, creating an iron hanging structure with internal pieces and a perforated outer aluminum skin. Several processes of the metal and plastic industry were used: laser-cutting, CNC milling, bending, MIG welding, and powder-coating painting, among others.
The entire LED system was custom made adapting 500 meters of RGBW digital LED strips, 2,500x 1.5W RGBW pixels, and 160x HERA LED 5W RGBW pixels. We also added different lighting fixtures that hang from the same spaceships: 36x Acme LED-MB4B FC, 20x EK Lights Orb 300 LED blinders, and 3x Minuit Une Pyramid lasers.
We also added an architainment lighting design touch to the walls by hiding the technology into a metal mesh that surrounds the whole venue with a total of 2,000 meters of RGBW digital LED strips with a custom-made black diffusor created specifically for Zouk Genting Highland.
Moreover, we included 60x Acme XP-5R Beam, 24x Martin Lighting RUSH MH 6, 40x Elation Professional ACL 360 Bars, 20x Martin Lighting Atomic 3000, 6x Smoke Factory hazers, and different MagicFX devices for special effects.
A grandMA 2 full-size is controlling the lighting fixtures, while the complete LED system is controlled using MADRIX Art-Net nodes (12x MADRIX STELLA, 5x MADRIX LUNA 16, and 4x MADRIX LUNA 8) with the MADRIX 5 KEY ultimate software.
We prefer to use digital LED solutions for having control over each individual LED pixel. This offers us enormous versatility in terms of programming, and thus we are able to create different lighting moods and to play with the venue's atmosphere.
We value perception and feeling over technical solutions. We believe technology should only be used as a tool that is kept in the background. Designing and creating fully custom-made lighting objects and sculptures provides us completely with that opportunity. These bespoke pieces allow spectators to ignore the technological complexity while venturing into the unique atmosphere that sound and light create.
Creating a large solution from scratch forces us to focus immensely on the details. Budget and schedule priorities do not allow us to follow an extensive prototyping process, as is the case in the product design industry, for example. For this reason, we decided to concentrate during prototyping mainly on how our lighting designs are perceived as well as the sensations we want to create. We use engineering and 3D software to carry out virtual structural calculations and foresee industrial and mechanical processes.
Our large structures and lighting objects, in contrast with tight ceiling load limits, drove us to find solutions using durable yet lightweight materials. In the case of the exterior aluminum skin for example, we found out that we could only afford to use 1-mm-thin sheets because of this weight issue. Our design and engineering team used different laser-cutting and industrial bending procedures to achieve extra stiffness, volumetric finishes, and at the same time helped to avoid additional joints.
Everything was created and built in Barcelona, Spain. We fully tested and assembled every single object and solution, allowing us to adjust and modify any possible issue we may face before the final assembly at the venue in Kuala Lumpur.
We believe in providing spectators and users with a truly unique experience. The only way to do that, in our opinion, is to avoid prefabricated solutions that would look like coming out of mass production.
The principle "form follows the function" could be replaced, in our specific case, with "technology follows the feeling". For this project, we began to design based on the feeling and atmosphere that we wanted the viewer to perceive. Technology simply is a tool for us to achieve that goal. We have visited many places in the past that are based on impressive technical solutions and hardware. However, we have the feeling that the ultimate goal behind them is to merely show off the many capabilities. We aim to create a space with soul, and we like to think that in Zouk Genting Highlands we have achieved that.