In 2009, Manchester print and exhibition specialists, The Image Group, were commissioned to design and install an outdoor photography exhibition on the Albert Dock in Liverpool.
The exhibition, ‘From Earth to the Universe,’ is a celebration of the historical efforts of global astronomers. It features a mixture of photographs from both scientists with professional telescopes to at-home enthusiasts. Its purpose was to “simulate worldwide interest in astronomy,” James Cavendish of Image Group describes.
The exhibit was sponsored by the Science Photo Library and Astronet and was to be viewed by hundreds of thousands of people globally during UNESCO’s International Year of Astronomy 2009. The exhibit, according to representatives at The Image Group, “…featured 26 Dibond panels measuring 3m x 80cm showing images of galaxies, planets, stars, the Milky Way and as far as the Moon and as far away as 13 billion light years.”
As Liverpool was awarded the European Capital of Culture, back in 2008, they were chosen as the prototype site for the exhibition. The Albert Dock is of great significance in the UK as it hosts the country’s largest collection of Grade I structures, or buildings of exceptional interest. Installing signage within an area of such historical preservation was a challenge for The Image Group as they adhered to the site’s “stringent installation conditions.”
Dave Cousins of Image Group explains, “We had to ensure that there were no visible signs of our work. We used stainless steel sign banding secured with jubilee clips. Any excess was cut off afterwards. This meant that there was no need to drill and everything could be pre-made at the factory to minimize any public disruption.”
Image Group was praised by both the Science Photo Library and Albert Dock representatives for producing an awe-inspiring exhibition under time and budget constraints. The exhibit was featured on a variety of high trafficked areas including parks, transit stations, shopping malls and airports. Science Photo Library’s Gary Evans describes, “The Image Group has helped us transform our ideas into a truly workable and inspirational exhibition. It has been a challenge to develop an exhibit flexible enough to install in such a wide variety of locations.”
Dibond aluminum composite is uniquely qualified for outdoor exhibitions. Its lightweight allows the material to be fabricated an installed with ease. Additionally, the material’s rigidity allows it to withstand wind and water degradation, enabling the perfect substrate for an outdoor photographic display.
information and photography courtesy of the Image Group