For months, blasting, demolition, and construction took place in a very confined space in order to realize a new, underground pathway within the rock. On this path subtle specks of light coalesce to form images of past landscapes, along with their flora and fauna. Guests are invited to take a tour and follow the earth's history over the past 20 million years. Particle animations on the rock layers tell a story about the formation of the rock at the bottom of the primordial sea, the subtropical sandy beach, the formation of the Alps, the last ice age, and the arrival of man in the Holocene. Light particles swirl like sand over the rock surfaces and meld together to form plants, animals, and people. Visitors encounter curious or fearful animals, experience the formation of the Alps and the barren flora and fauna of the Ice Age, and come face to face with themselves at the end of the tour.
Tweaklab composed all the animations of the animals and plants and programmed the behaviour of the particles. This includes the interactive particle projection that is implemented to represent the arrival of humans. The movements of the visitors are transferred into particles and simultaneously projected as a moving inverted silhouette on the rock. The soundscape of the individual rock chambers was composed by Tweaklab and mixed on site. At the end of the rock pathway is a mountain lake. It was carved out of the rock, and as you approach it, it turns into a roaring whirlpool. This vortex symbolizes the center of time and is the lowest point on the rock path.
Following the staircase, the visitors then arrive at the cosmophone, and are alerted by pulsating blue light. Mankind has arrived at the Anthropocene. What will remain longest of our species are words and sounds that glide as waves into space. That is why guests are asked at this point: "Leave a lasting trace in the universe, too. Speak or sing your own personal message into our cosmophone. We'll send it out into space.”
Tweaklab was commissioned with the technical implementation, as well as with the programming of a generative sound system that records the spoken words and plays them back in an unearthly form. The visitors listen to their messages in the staircase and follow along as their messages disappear into space.
Having arrived in the outside world, the path continues to a very special place, namely the Sommerau. It offers an unforgettable view of the city of Lucerne and Mount Pilatus. This vantage point is complemented by a stereoscopic time machine called "Alpenblick". The latest surveying, geological and climatological research data, allow visitors to experience the formation, modelling, and future of Central Switzerland up close through the time telescope. Cranking the wheel to the right takes you into the future with the eroding Pilatus, while cranking to the left takes you to a palm beach or the primordial sea, before circling back to the present.
Tweaklab was commissioned with the entire media technology planning, implementation, and installation, including: the programming of a real-time particle system with system integration into a game engine, as well as the programming of the control system for sound and light. Storyboards and detailed concepts for the staging in the space. Implementation of the animations with programming and integration into a procedural timeline. Design of the parameters for particles and timing of light and sound, in addition to the sound design of the rock chambers, as well as the programming of the generative sound system of the cosmophone and the media technical planning and installation of the stereoscopic time telescope.
Commission: Stiftung Gletschergarten Luzern
Architects: Miller & Maranta Architekten, Basel
Scenography: Velvet Creative Office, Luzern