Step Right Up to New, Touchless Interactive Lanterns

Innovative touchless lanterns move, change colors, spout bubbles, smoke, shoot water, and more!

2020 was an unprecedented year for all due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Tianyu Arts & Culture, Inc., worked with venue partners to adapt and create new touchless interactive displays that still maintained — and even enhanced — the festival experience.

Interactive Stone Man Chinese Lantern
Interactive Stone Man Chinese Lantern.

Like many in 2020, Tianyu had to innovate and pivot as events were canceled or postponed across the world due to health and safety concerns.

For over 10 years, Tianyu has worked with zoos, botanical gardens, and natural science institutions to create one-of-a-kind Lantern Festivals that feature customizable illuminated lanterns that visitors can not only look at but also interact with by touching.

Since many of our lanterns’ interactive elements were activated by touch, the Tianyu engineering team began developing and creating new touchless lantern displays that visitors could engage with without physically touching.

We created completely new touchless lanterns for 2021, including three existing displays that were transformed into touchless displays, through a number of techniques, including artificial intelligence programming, motion and gravity sensors, time control, and more.

We were able to work with our partners to create new, innovative ways to safely share our lanterns while meeting their individual and organization goals, including drive-through experiences seen at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

Touchless Displays

Angel Wings

A fan-favorite throughout all of our Lantern Festivals is the angel wings display, which is the perfect photo opportunity. For 2021, we added motion sensors to the display so that feathers of the wings will change colors and move to the motion of visitors’ arms. “The interactive Angel Wings in Louisville this year is a upgrade from our usual angel wings from previous years. Visitors are surprised to see that even a simple photo op can be turned into something that you can play with,” said Jessie Li, Manager of Business Development at Tianyu Arts & Culture, Inc.

Colorful Butterflies

The butterflies will start changing colors when guests step onto the sensing stepping board.

Peony Wall

Visitors can step onto the gravity-sensing boards to activate motions of the peony flowers on the wall.

Stone Man

The Stone Man is activated when visitors step on the round light pad. The signals are sent to the feet of the Stone Man through a lead wire, which will then send the signals up to the heart and gradually light up the whole display. The Stone Man will go back to sleep after a while until it comes alive again for the next visitor.

Smoke Bubble Tree

Smoke bubbles come out of the top of the tree when visitors walk through it. Visitors can play with the bubbles, which turn into smoke and fog when they touch the ground.
Interactive Smoke Bubble Tree Chinese Lantern
Interactive Smoke Bubble Tree Chinese Lantern.

Water Spitting Turtle

When visitors approach the turtle and activate the infrared sensing system, the turtle spits out water randomly. The faster you move, the less likely you’ll be splashed by water.
These new lantern displays were created in response to health and safety concerns, but due to popularity they will become regular experiences in future festivals. We are always innovating, and will continue to further develop and promote our lanterns based feedback from visitors and venue partners.