Blog – Zoe Carruthers: A deep dive into the art of graphic installations in sports venues

Posted 31 August 2023 by Anysia Henderson
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Zoe Carruthers – Senior Project Manager

Read on as Zoe Carruthers, Senior Project Manager within the Sports sector at MacroArt, reflects on the impact of our work at sports arenas and stadia across the country and takes a deep dive into the art of graphic installations.

 

“It’s amazing how today’s sports stadiums and venues seamlessly morph overnight from one event to the next, yet the public are often none the wiser as to how it all happens. All the vibrant event graphics dotted around the stadium have been meticulously planned and expertly installed. Whether it’s a temporary overlay service or a permanent install, the team at MacroArt is behind many of those installs across sports stadia throughout the UK.

Generally, our work in the sports venue sector is split into two key areas. Between May and September there is a lot of focus on providing temporary overlays for events. This is essentially the dressing of stadia for one-off concerts or sporting events in a neutral stadium to deliver the brand impact that has become such an important part of today’s experiences.

Every temporary graphics installation requires meticulous planning with several stakeholders and a particular focus in the week before the event. While we always try to book at least a week to install each job, timeframes are often tight, and flexibility is key to ensuring we can install according to both the client’s and stadia’s needs.

Whilst the build-up can often be a challenge, the turnaround time for derigging can be even more so! Everything must be out as quickly as possible so the venue can be returned to normal. State-of-the-art sports stadiums are designed today to transform from one event to the next and so working at speed is essential; that’s where our expertise really counts.

Alongside installation and take down, the advantage of our temporary overlay service is that when all the graphics are removed, they return to our offices and go through our audited recycling streams – guaranteeing a sustainable approach. By using this service, clients are assured all materials have been correctly captured and recycled and they can clearly see how much CO²e they’ve saved. The pride for us is not just finishing a job to the best levels of service and quality but knowing we have also made a significant impact on reducing carbon emissions.

An increasing number of venues and stadia are now much more conscious of their carbon footprint. From greener travel to more sustainable food and drink suppliers and packaging, the little things stack up to make a major difference. Therefore, it is vital that we keep developing our own sustainability credentials to be part of the solution and assist venues in becoming as green as possible with their graphics fittings.

In addition to temporary overlay installations, we have a growing reputation and focus on permanent graphics and installs for sports stadiums and arenas. Here the variety of services and branding of spaces is incredibly varied. From traditional vinyls to the latest innovations in lightboxes and fabrics, we work to ensure the best substrates are used and those that will last according to their location. For instance, in a section of a stadium where there are many away fans, we’d probably use vinyl to safeguard against any potential damage, while still enabling high impact branding of the space.

Durability and longevity for permanent installs is always front of mind because they will naturally be there longer. We must consider elements such as the weather, footfall in the stadium and even beer and ketchup stains! All these considerations will influence the type of graphics we recommend.

However, the art of installation is not just about the materials. When looking at a new project we always look at how best to utilise the space within the timeframe available, and this is why our clients value our service and the art of MacroArt.

Using space is what we do best, and with our permanent installations we want them to have maximum impact and longevity for each project. So how we use the space is paramount. Can we install tension frame graphics or a lightbox? If there is a vast wall, can we use innovative materials, structures, and lighting to deliver the brand experience that our clients desire?

It’s these questions that make our job so satisfying!

Indeed, when producing work for any sports venue, whether temporary or permanent, time is always critical. Deadlines are fixed because of sports matches, which often results in limited time, and that’s again where our expertise exceeds.

As a team we genuinely believe we can do anything for our sporting clients. There is always a way; the question is: what is the way? From a temporary solution for the latest major concert through to a permanent install designed to maximise the brand experience for fans, we can provide the large format graphics and branding our clients’ need.

That is why we all take pride in delivering the art of MacroArt and seeing the impact of our work at sports arenas and stadia across the country.”

 


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