There is no age limit to experience wonder. We are never too old to have our minds blown. This can be applied across the board for all monumental moments, or those perceived as such. And we seek out the rush of those experiences, don’t we? We look for quality over quantity. Time is precious, and we love to be impressed. Being underwhelmed is a grey place to be.
While visiting London, UK recently, I visited a new venue called Aures London. It’s a new age kind of venue set to tease and tantalize all the senses in a subtle and seamless way. It’s rare to find a space that incorporates creativity, proximity, technology and sheer artistry. Walking in, I was transported to a different parallel place in time and was amazed at how far we’ve come, how grand our minds can expand and how can grandiose ideas can come to fruition with the right ingredients.
I remember my first electronic music party where I left breathless. Too young and naive to be up to anything nefarious, I remember entering this unassuming space, through an unassuming door in between store fronts. The stairs leading upstairs were stark white, lit with fluorescent that cast an antiseptic blue light all around. Only at the top of the stairs could you hear the muffled sound of the bass and we started to follow that. Open door Number 1!
Upon entering the loft space, we are seduced with the scent of incense and a party in full swing. Straight out of a movie scene, we became immersed in the plot of this party. We were part of the art installation and it was incredible. Black lights and a huge hanging spaceship in the middle of the room, covered in neon paint, glowing. Another room was set up like an igloo, with white sheets fixed about honeycomb shapes and a white fur rug and white cashmere throw pillows strewn about.
The sound was piped throughout the whole loft space with speakers and in some rooms was louder than others. My senses were so overwhelmed with the delivery of the event, I forgot to ask who was playing. It didn’t matter.
Fast forward to today, where our tech advances have us far beyond blacklight paint on cardboard spaceships to projection mapping, video FX, 3D sound and a new-age sensory Shangri La. It’s a time when music is produced on an intricate level to be played on intricate systems and the atmosphere comes alive with it.
There are nightclubs that boast of amazing atmospheres but what about events that don’t fit into the nightclub vibe? Or what if an event is meant to showcase quality and create a memorable, life-enriching experience? In a world that’s asking for more, we want our venues to offer more so we entertain audiences with more and send them home with more.
There’s something magical about transforming a space into something that starts out as an idea. This is where Aures London comes in. Aures London’s newly opened venue is nearing completion as Europe’s first five sense fully immersive arts and events venue, providing an unrivaled blank canvas in one of central London’s coolest locations for art exhibitions, installations, events, live performances and corporate hire.
It’s not an “every weekend thing”, Aures London is the pièce de résistance of event spaces. I’m not being paid to say this, I wasn’t paid to go visit. A friend told me to check out their Instagram, that’s all. I went to the site and sent an email with a small window of opportunity to visit and was accommodated with grace.
Leake Street – the famous Graffiti Tunnel of railway arches under Waterloo – was the home of Banksy’s legendary Cans Festival in 2008, since when it has become a constantly changing legal canvas for street artists and taggers, and a celebrated part of London’s urban culture.
Aures London is the first opening in a regeneration by Lambeth Council of eight former railway arches, providing a curated collection of restaurants and bars, and joining established tenants the Vaults and House of Vans.
With the completion of its immersive audio installation (echoic phase), Aures London is already a magnet for audiophiles. During the demo while I was there, we tested different kinds of music while we walked around to hear the sound from all angles of the space. It’s fair to say that the description from Aures London is accurate and I can attest to the clarity of each sound and quality of the entire system.
Aures London’s co-founder Sam Davis explains,
“We have taken the biomechanics of hearing and scientifically created a space where you’re optimizing the listener’s experience to the highest degree, while simultaneously bringing this organic, almost life-like 3D element with movement and direction to create something totally unique.”
The ground-breaking 3D audio technology has set a new standard in Hi-Fi sound experience through a mass array of Pioneer Pro Audio XY speakers. The system is powered by ten separate Powersoft amplifiers, arranged to cover the length of the venue, positioning sound not only left and right but also to the front and back and height terms, relative to the floor and ceiling.
“Our system places every listener in the venue is in the ‘sweet spot’. Instead of having just two sound sources at the front of the room like most venues, we have 25 sound sources on either side room on three sound planes. This means the listener can enjoy the dynamic power of auditorium sound while having the intimate clarity of headphones.” Davis continues.
Phase one of its sound (“echoic”) capability is complete, with its ground-breaking 3D sound system that is becoming the benchmark for sound system designers across the world. Phase two will add a Haptic floor and precision-designed, bespoke wall and ceiling acoustic paneling. Sight (“iconic”) will soon be completed with the fitting of 3D mapping and visualization projection; already there is an intelligent digital moving lighting system and an extensive wired truss for visual installations. Scent (“olfactory”) and taste (“gustatory”) were launched in March 2018 with a scent delivery installation from world-renowned perfumer Azzi Glasser and a foretaste of the gastrophysics of food and beverage.
Aures London’s Sensorium has capacity for up to 150 seated or 250 standing and I could see while I was there that having even 150 people there would fill the place nicely, it’s cozy but not small, by any means.
When thinking outside the box, this venue, this incredibly creative space is a perfect choice. I could see it done up for everything from a poetry reading to a live electronic show to an underground experiential rave to an art exhibition or installation, the sky is the limit here. Or maybe the railway arch, in this case.
During our travels, it’s always fun to check out new places that have something to do with the industry we work in. They don’t always come in the most predictable ways and might offer the most unpredictable of delights. I will reiterate, I wasn’t paid to visit this space, I wanted to. And I am so happy I did.
Culture breeds creativity and in the end, can we ever run out of inspiration?
Thank you, Aures London for your time and our visit to your innovation factory.