14 Oct 2014
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Explore the city with Artweek Auckland and ARTQUEST: K’RD

By Shannon Williams

Auckland-based company UrbanLogic and Imersia have developed a new app called ARTQUEST: K’RD in conjunction with Artweek Auckland (10-19 October).

The app features augmented reality, geo-referencing and gamification combined with art, the urban environment and public realm design. It is the first of its kind here in NZ.

Commissioned by Auckland Council and K Road Business Association, the project uses augmented reality to create a unique and interactive way finding system that aims to provide accessibility to the visible and hidden art and design studios of K Road, using AR combined with a mapping interface, audiovisual content and gamification elements

Within the Artweek printed programme is a map of the K’Rd precinct. When a smartphone is held over it, a 3D version pops up on screen and users are able to zoom in and out of the map by moving their phone towards or away from it.

Basically, K Road will be coming alive digitally through the ARTQUEST: K’RD app.

There will be special markers along K’Rd where users can hold their phones up, as if taking a photo, and a moving animation will pop up on screen. This feature uses the phone’s actual camera, so the animation is happening live on the user’s smartphone, meaning the background and any people in it will be included in the shot.

The Wayfinding feature is similar. Using geo referencing (what Google Maps uses) you can hold your smartphone up in front of you and using the camera in the phone, little animated markers of galleries/spaces involved in Artweek will pop up – showing you which direction you need to head to get there – like a compass.

“The app is all about connecting people with their cities again. Rather than plotting a route from your Google Map…this encourages you to explore and discover – to find your own way there", says Ian Vincent, director of Urbanlogic.

The Artweek app was done on an incredibly small budget, with artists, videographers and editors jumping on board to help with the project.


Urbanlogic (creators, innovators, and urban design wizards) are the creative minds behind the project, in collaboration with partners Imersia.

Check out a video of the app in use here

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