Dreams of Freedom

National Museum of American Jewish History

A history of struggle and triumph told through our signature approach of blending physical and digital media.

Overview

Out of the six exhibits we developed with the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia, the Dreams of Freedom gallery is most emblematic of our approach to synthesize the digital and physical media using every skill at our disposal, from animation, to original score, to sculpture. We worked with the museum to create a poetic interpretation of the numerous factors that motivated one quarter of Europe’s Jewish population to immigrate to America at the turn of the last century, as told through their mailed letters.

Services

Media Design

The Details

Located on the second floor, Dreams of Freedom uses a signature projection system that blends imagery with physical sculpture. Instead of a flat projection screen, the surface that receives the projection is a custom fabricated three dimensional sculpture representing the countless and personal letters sent by immigrants to their home countries. This new approach offers an unusual opportunity to mix the undulations of the letter-inspired sculptures with projected illumination.

Through letters, a poetic interpretation of immigration

Local Projects worked with the museum’s curatorial team to review hundreds of archival letters, interpreting the letters’ content into a series of five films based on historical accounts. We also used iterative 3D scanning and modeling of the actual aged and curved letters to form the basis for the sculpture. For visitors watching, letters appear to float down from the sky. As images of immigrants flash past, visitors hear the contents of a letter read in English, Yiddish and Hebrew, relating what they hoped the new world will bring, describing the good and the bad that await immigrants coming to America.