The Derry Girls Experience, Tower Museum
STUDIO / DESIGNER
Dara Lynne Lenehan
Derry City & Strabane District Council, Tourism Northern Ireland, Visit Derry
Dara Lynne Lenehan (Design Lead)
Brian Hickey (Media and Graphics Lead)
Eilish Rafferty (Content Manager)
Brendan Farrell (Audio Visual Production)
Accesso (Digital Media)
Alexander Boyd Display (Print and Fit out installation)
Symphony XR (XR Specialists)
Design Challenge and Design Ideas
Derry City and Strabane District Council, in partnership with Tourism Northern Ireland (TNI) and Visit Derry engaged EPIC to design, produce and deliver a flagship exhibition on the Derry Girls Programme, its popularity and legacy, launched in July 2023.
EPIC designed and delivered a connected experience for visitors that inspires and engages visitors across multiple touch points including physical spaces, digital channels and interactive props. It offers visitors a seamless end-to-end experience that both surprises and delights.
EPIC worked in close collaboration with the fit-out contractors on the installation and fabrication of all exhibition elements and managed the entire installation works for this project. The entire project was delivered within budget, inside a very tight timeframe.
The end result is a high quality, original, immersive, innovative and comedic visitor experience highlighting the social impact of the Derry Girls phenomenon, the roots of its setting in Derry and its already-enduring legacy.
How the brief was fulfilled
Through innovative and universal design, two sets from the show – the Quinn Sitting room and Ma Mary’s Kitchen – were completely recreated, using a mix of original props and furniture from the show, (available through partnership with Hat Trick Productions). Large graphic panels act as backdrops to the sets emanating the Quinn home wallpaper and feature accompanying text and imagery. Museum cases available from the Tower Museum were utilised to showcase more delicate items of interest.
Additionally, the most memorable costumes from the show are displayed along with replica dress-up Our Lady’s Immaculate School uniforms for photo-ops.
A major element of this exhibition was to enable visitors to digitally interact with both the exhibition and the TV show using AR and other suitable technologies.
Using Augmented Reality we created two additional ‘Set Extensions’ to further immerse visitors in the world of the Derry Girls TV series. These are Sr. Michael’s Office and Erin’s Bedroom. Using iPads, visitors easily access these digital sets and discover more information about our chosen characters – Erin and Sr.Michael – through highlighted objects in the room.
Our smartphone application audio guide permit download pre arrival to plan your journey, find about events, and be guided by our local Derry girl throughout the exhibition – all clearly marked points.
Using the newly developed exhibition graphic theme, we was used as an animation to accompany original film footage placed at key points around the exhibition space to complement the interpretation and display. Subtitles were used throughout.
A digital touchscreen installed in a table top kiosk stocks a range of interactive activities – a cross-generational multiple choice quiz on the Derry Girls show and exhibition; a cross selling map of key locations connected to the show in the city, and a chance to read the pages of Erin’s Diary – a treasured artefact from the show.
EPIC worked with partners Northwest Events a programme of monthly engagement events to engage all ages and abilities. These include workshops, panel discussions and a 1990s themed disco at the Guildhall.
An excellent set of experiences that tied together so well. Good consideration of language and hearing barriers. Really strong execution with everything clearly done to the highest standards and with a premium experience for visitors in mind."