Cambridge BRAINFest, a public festival of brain research, brought together more than 130 neuroscientists from across Cambridge to present ground breaking research through 30 interactive exhibits.
We were tasked by the team at Cambridge Neuroscience to provide full technical production for the two-day exhibition held at the Cambridge Corn Exchange. This included providing lighting, sound, video, rigging and technical infrastructure as well as the design and build of a stunning LED sculpture representing firing neurons.


Wanting to create an exciting and engaging exhibition with high production values, we worked closely with our client from the very beginning of the project to bring their exciting vision to life. With the exhibition featuring five key areas, each representing a different part of the brain, we mapped out the zones using multiple truss circles. 

The focal point of the exhibition featured an impressive installation designed to represent neurons firing within the brain. Captivating visitors, the striking sculpture was created using 1600 LED balls, each running custom pixel mapped content.

To light the space, we used a combination of moving light fixtures to define the separate zones and provide ambient lighting. For audio, we installed a compact sound system that delivered impressive performance, perfect for a venue the size of the Corn Exchange. 


“From the initial concept for BRAINFest through to the derig of the awesome structure, I was thoroughly impressed by the creativity, professionalism, flexibility, energy and friendliness of James, and all the team at Hawthorn. They allowed BRAINFest to run smoothly and removed any stress from me. Most impressive was the fact that they got the concept totally from the start, and translated, into reality, the vision I held (in my head!) for BRAINFest, transforming the Corn Exchange into a scientific wonderland – it was such a pleasure to work with Hawthorn and I hope to do so again in the future - thank you!”

Dr Dervila Glynn, Cambridge Neuroscience IRC Coordinator