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Jackie Robinson Museum Opening Features Interactive Model of Ebbets Field

Ideum collaborated with the Jackie Robinson Museum and Gensler DXD to create an illuminated and detailed scale model of Ebbets Field.
Authored by
Jim Spadaccini
Founder & Creative Director

Earlier this week, Ideum staff attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony and the opening party for the Jackie Robinson Museum in New York City. This new 20,000-square-foot museum in Manhattan will be a “venue for vibrant dialogue on critical social issues and innovative educational programming.” A decade in the making, Ideum was brought in toward the end of the project, collaborating closely with Gensler DXD, who developed the original concept for the Ebbet’s Field interactive, to design and fabricate a cornerstone exhibit built around a detailed and interactive physical model of Ebbets Field, the home of the Brooklyn Dodgers. The three-dimensional Ebbets Field model was featured earlier this week in the New York Times, which ran an excellent story about the Jackie Robinson Museum Opening.

The model is 1/64 scale (S scale) and has built-in controllable LED lighting throughout the model from the Ebbets Field sign to illuminated features such as the bullpens, dugouts, press boxes, along with areas in the stands. The field is designed for projection mapping and an LED tile wall behind the model finished the installation. Ideum designed and integrated the AV elements, while our partner Gensler DXD authored the software program which tells important stories of Jackie Robinson’s career and his activism. The interactive experience includes two new Ideum “Reading Rail” 34” 5K displays (which will be formally announced as a new product later this year).

The model has a number of interesting details and features. Along with all of the illuminated features, the outfield includes a digital scoreboard, masked with a fabricated cover to replicate the original scoreboard at Ebbets Field. In addition, there are a series of advertising signs that were seen back in the heyday of the Brooklyn Dodgers. The stands are full, as they would be in a playoff or World Series game; we designed and produced over 30,000 3D printed characters for the crowd. The model was designed, fabricated, and integrated at Ideum’s fabrication studio in Corrales, New Mexico.

During the ribbon cutting on Tuesday morning, Rachel Robinson, who just turned 100 earlier this month, did the honors in front of a crowd of museum supporters and VIPs. In the audience were former Attorney General Eric Holder, Spike Lee, Billie Jean King, and many other celebrities, politicians, and sports personalities. New York Mayor Eric Adams made a speech and delivered a proclamation, recognizing the museum opening. You can see the entire event via the Jackie Robinson Museum’s YouTube channel. We have some additional photos from the event on the Ideum Flickr site. It was a privilege to be part of this project and we are grateful for the opportunity to contribute to such an important museum, amazingly the only civil rights museum in New York City.

As mentioned earlier, this project has been ongoing for almost 20 years. Rachel Robinson was a major driving force as the Jackie Robinson Foundation worked to create a museum in lower Manhattan. In our somewhat late entry to the project, we’ve been working with Gensler who did many things for the project: architecture & interior design; exhibit graphic design and digital experience design. The project manager was Zubatkin Owner Representation Inc. In addition, we worked with Electrosonic who provided additional AV support.