On the 16th February 2018 in Manhattan, an ominous black cube called Spyscape opened to the public on 8th Avenue.
For months it had been wrapped in hoarding that simply said ‘Question Everything’ in bold type. A delayed opening of 3 months probably just contributed to its mystery.
The previous year, I had been contacted by Ross Phillips (who I’d worked with at Dalziel+Pow) to see if I was interested in joining him and ten or so others in a disused creche in a faded shopping centre to work on a spy museum. On the basis it seemed a bit like Francis Ford Coppola’s The Conversation, I gave a definitive yes.
It has been an extremely satisfying year and believe we’ve come up with something that will raise the bar a bit for future museum experiences.
That said, it may be wrong to describe Spyscape as a museum as much as something that is still growing organically, and seems set to have plenty more to reveal.
In it’s current state, Spyscape is a 5000sq metre interactive museum covering the world of espionage from WWII to present day. It is split across floors into six different spy experiences that informs as well as tests the skills of its audience, ultimately allocating them with a spy archetype. In doing so it intends to reveal the world of espionage to its visitors, but maybe something about themselves too.
We present the key players who have shaped the world of espionage, from the Bletchley Park crew up to Ed Snowden with the intention of leaving the audience to decide who are the heroes and who are the villains.
We’ve told the adventures of these people, but had the added advantage of actual spies and hackers working alongside us and gave their own accounts of the murky world of espionage. Not to mention organisations and governments and the role they play.
Away from the physcial space there is the ever expanding online presence, aimed both at new audiences and those who want to discover more after their visit. There is every intention that Spyscape will manifest much more than it’s current space in Manhattan