Something creative and colorful is coming to Charlotte this weekend.
Tomorrow, Crayola IDEAworks opens in Camp North End. Charlotte is the second stop on the exhibit’s tour, which began in Philadelphia.
Lauren Katz, the creative director and owner of Innov8tive Exhibitions, said this is the exhibit’s first time in the Queen City.
The venue was transformed from an 18,000 square foot warehouse space into a colorful, interactive experience that is intended to make learning fun.
Stay informed with news and events that impact Charlotte’s Black communities.
The activities are designed to bring participants together and help them explore their creativity by designing a custom creative profile.
The “idea” in IDEAworks stands for identifying problems, defining the details, exploring the options and assessing the solutions.
Katz gave a rundown of the “color verse” and explained some of the interactive activities.
Going through the “colorverse”
When guests first arrive, they can predict which creative profile they think they will have. This is done by standing in one of nine lit up columns, each with a different creative profile and “craymoji.”
This is one of a few attractions that the exhibit is debuting here in Charlotte.
From there, guests are given wrist bands with a scannable code on them that they can use to interact with certain stations.
After picking up the wrist band guests will then choose a color and custom icon. I went with the color yellow and the bird icon.
While going through the exhibit, guests will see their specialized icons at various stations, this helps to make each experience intentional and unique as there are 180 different icon and color combinations.
Next, comes a short introduction video that offers inspiration and creativity to everyone viewing it.
“We’re going to teach you some skills to creatively solve problems and have great ideas,” said Katz.
After the introduction, it’s time for guests to enter the “colorverse.”
Once guests enter the “colorverse” they will find four different hubs – one for each letter of the I.D.E.A acronym. Then, they will be posed with two questions at each hub to help build their creativity profile.
The IDEAworks exhibit has been in the making for over two years. “We got 30 people together and we brainstormed,” Katz said.
The exhibit is self-guided so guests can explore the different hubs and activities individually or with their party in whatever order they choose.
The planning process involved interviewing children ages six through 12 and seeing what they like and what problems they want to solve.
Katz stated that the exhibit had been originally designed for that age group, but was enjoyed by adults and teens as well.
The exhibit area, also called “Crayopolis” has three themed sections: city, mars, and ocean. Each themed area has several activities that go along with it.
“We used the IDEA process to design this whole exhibition,” said Katz.
The exhibit offers some spots designed for taking and posting photos, one of which being the light bulb chair which is also making its debut in the Queen City.
At the end of the exhibit, guests will be able to see their creative profile based on their interactions with the activities.
Whether you do a few activities or all of them, each guests gets their own profile and a postcard to go along with it.
After trying out a few of the activities, I was given the “unmellow yellow” profile and postcard.
Even if a guest is given a certain profile, they can choose any of the postcards they wish on their way out of the exhibit.
This is to keep guests from feeling like they are confined to just one creative profile.
“That’s the heart of this whole exhibit,” said Katz.
Once they are done with the exhibit, guests can stop in the gift shop to buy t-shirts, books, crayola products and other creative items.
On their way out, guests can also take a picture in the marker throne.
Crayola IDEAworks has so much fun and educational activities to choose from. The colorful lights and interactive stations can make for a completely different experience on each visit.
While the exhibit was built with young children in mind, it has a vibe of joy, fun and self-exploration that people of all ages can enjoy.