Christie Laser Projectors Restore Splendor of Ancient Sikh Fortress

Christie projection mapping on Qila Mubarak
(Image credit: Christie)

More than two dozen Christie 1DLP laser projectors are lighting up an ancient fortress in northwestern India showcasing Sikh architecture with spectacular projections to re-create its historical splendor and glory.

Located in the city of Patiala in Punjab, Qila Mubarak was built as a mud fortress by Sidhu Jat ruler Baba Ala Singh in 1763, who was the founder of the Patiala dynasty. It occupies an area of 10 acres in the heart of the city, and also served as the residential palace of the Patiala Royal family. The complex is known for its majestic design façades that include Ran Baas (guest house), Darbar Hall (royal court) and Quila Androon (royal chambers), which is known for its 13 royal chambers adorned with scenes from Hindu mythology painted in Patiala’s art style.

At night, the natural beauty of this iconic monument is brought to life using Christie HS Series 1DLP laser projectors installed and commissioned by Pyramid Technologies, which was previously responsible for several high-profile, large-scale projects across India, including the Statue of Unity—the tallest statue in the world. Architectural lighting design firm Lucent Worldwide served as the consultant of this major façade illumination project.

Christie projection mapping on Qila Mubarak

The illuminations are a sight to behold at Darbar Hall, or royal court (Image credit: Christie)

Said Aarti Parwaney, director, Pyramid Technologies: “The magic of the historic structures has been meticulously recreated by highlighting the ornate designs on the entrances, works of bas relief featuring geometrical, floral and other images to bring out the nuances from surrounding surfaces through projection mapping techniques. 

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A total of 27 Christie HS Series laser projectors with brightness levels of up to 20,000 lumens have been deployed for this huge endeavor, which is also the second-largest 3D projection mapping permanent installation in India after the Statue of Unity. The projectors are fitted in Rover weatherproof IP55 enclosures throughout the Qila Mubarak complex, and the entire process was completed and commissioned over a period of three months.

“The execution team had to take special care during installation, since the building structures of Qila Mubarak are Punjab State protected monuments,” said Parwaney. “Before mounting the projectors on the roof, we conducted a thorough study to ensure that the load-bearing strength to mount the projectors in their housings, as well as the solar panels for powering the setup would not cause any damage to the structure.”

Christie projection mapping on Qila Mubarak

The majestic Ran Baas is brilliantly transformed using 3D projection mapping (Image credit: Christie)

Similar care was taken to overcome challenges to the line of sight at Darbar Hall due to tree cover in certain areas, Parwaney noted, adding that the angle of mapping and support structures had to be modified accordingly to avoid causing any damage to the trees in the courtyard.

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The team’s meticulous efforts enabled them to accomplish this fascinating architectural illumination that delighted all stakeholders of this project. “The results are simply astounding and they are very satisfied with the quality of the projections and reliability of the HS Series projectors,” added Parwaney. “They have performed admirably to successfully re-create the magic of this glorious ancient monument.”

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