Royal Wolf will have a starring role in the New Zealand International Arts Festival this year as part of multi-media installation and theatre work The Performance Arcade.
Twenty eight Royal Wolf containers will be strategically placed along the Wellington waterfront to provide a unique and vast stage for the live art event which runs from February 26 until March 3.
The containers will be stacked to create a two-level ‘arcade’, with some used to create walk-over bridges. One will stand on its end for dramatic impact.
”Royal Wolf containers will be used as building blocks for the event and provide amazing new spaces to experience the performing arts,” says creative director Sam Trubridge of performing arts group Playground NZ, who produce The Performance Arcade.
He also likens shipping containers to “test tubes” that are ideal for experimenting with performance and theatre in a public space.
There are a lot of people in performing arts who find stationary theatre and gallery spaces are not suitable for their work.
“Shipping containers provide an alternative space, one that can be placed in any location to function as a stage or shelter for a work of art, yet they are also practical to work in,” he says.
Royal Wolf has provided containers for projects ranging from walls to support heritage buildings in Christchurch to container modifications for Pop-Up cafes and a portable ice cream factory.
The company also provided containers for a Playground NZ exhibition in Auckland’s Aotea Square to coincide with the final ten days of the Rugby World Cup, as well as previous Performance Arcade events.
With 28 containers, the scale of this year’s production is the group’s biggest yet.
“The artists are finding new innovative ways of working with the containers,” says Trubridge who points to the example of ‘The Freight’ performance by Kasia Pol which uses eight containers stacked double height to “create a monumental space”.
Wellington Sales Manager Rochelle Bullmore says the collaboration with The Playground NZ is yet another example of the diverse and unique services Royal Wolf offer.
“We’re always willing to try new things and we invite the artists to visit us and see the range of products available.”
Trubridge says working with Royal Wolf has opened up further possibilities for future projects and allows them to push creative and artistic boundaries.
“Royal Wolf are always so willing to go above and beyond. They also understand the importance of ‘detail’ in events of this scale.”