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Channel your animal personality in an immersive adventure at the new Museum of Infinite Realities

22:49 25/04/2024

Explore the True You’ is the scary yet intriguing proposition of the Museum of Infinite Realities (MOIR), a new interactive experience that’s opened in the centre of Brussels.

Located up a flight of stairs above a cobbled street near the Grand Place, the site resembles a nightclub rather than a museum: its darkened leopard-print corridors illuminated by twinkling pink strobes.

In fact, the museum title is a bit of a misnomer, organisers admit. While this world-first exploration of your inner self provides insight into how you socially interact, it is pure entertainment. The high-tech show dazzles with light, sound and holographic projections and installations.


It’s also a narrative experience, inviting visitors to become the hero of their own story in an inaugural adventure centred around six animal guides, each representing a different personality type.

This is a collective adventure for groups of up to 24, aged 10 and above. After checking in, each participant receives a tagged bracelet. The journey to inner enlightenment travels through seven distinct rooms and spaces. In all but the final one, you need to make choices, scanning your bracelet as data is collected by radio identification technology.


The first space resembles a game show. We gather around a giant interactive console; the excitement mounting as a series of questions – from favourite film genres to spirituality – call for individual responses. It’s amusing to see how your answers differ from those around the room while revealing who you share an affinity with.

In the experiences that follow, various cutting-edge technologies, including 5D holograms and smokescreens, border on sensory overload. In one, a selection of Belgian personalities only give away their first names as they recount their personal stories; each representing one of the key animal groups.


In another, a stark choice divides the group into two. On a perverse whim, I opt for the more negative of the two. Coated in cocooning Vantablack super-black paint, this turns out to be my favourite room. After the previous sound and light onslaught, darkness descends and the voice of British philosopher and entertainer Alan Watts offers a brief moment of reflection.

Extrovert versus introvert qualities are tested in a dancing room filled with special effects and illusions, including images of the six predatory animals that symbolise the personality types. With the experience designed for groups – friends, colleagues, families, team-building groups – this one would definitely suit an afterwork event.


For the finale, it’s a sit-down affair in an auditorium, each of us equipped with a headset. The hologram show that follows is an entertaining prelude before the big reveal. “Channel your ****,” repeats a personal message divulging the predator that best mirrors my personality. I wasn’t expecting this one, but sharing notes with other participants, it’s reassuring to know I’m not the only one to possess this animal’s traits.

At the check-out desk, we each receive a printed card with the positive and negative characteristics of our individual animal groups, along with a personal photo bearing a holographic image of the aforementioned creature. It makes for an original souvenir.

The Bulletin’s intern Achille Piedboeuf, who had a peek at the server powering the sophisticated technology, recounts his own experience. “I was dazzled by the sound and light show. I found the introspective journey to be a bit of an excuse to show off the cutting-edge technology used.

“However, given the means put in place to take us on this journey, it works! I got caught up in the game and really thought about the choices that were offered to me. I also went behind the scenes of this experience and was amazed by the technology used. The holographic show is really unique.”


Debriefing continues in the bar area – chandeliers and plush velvet sofas funnelling that nightclub vibe again. The power of shared experience is at the root of this new venture, explains MOIR’s CEO Kristian Gilroy. It’s also intended to be a positive experience with the result varying depending on the individual mood of each player on the day, he adds.

Scientific research underpins the animal guides with psychological and neurological analysis provided by a team under Dr Martha Newson. Designed to help people better understand themselves, the experience aime to provide an immersive mindfulness moment for each participant.

Gilroy is a founder of the London-based, award-winning Cinimod Studios, which specialises in designing mapping, sound, light and illusion projections. Fellow British company, the real estate developer Everland has provided financial backing.

Together, they plan to expand the Brussels experience to other cities around the world, including Paris, London, New York, Rome and Dubai. While the Belgian venue is permanent, the current show is likely to be tweaked and updated over the coming years.

Longer-term, the ambitious and passionate creative team would like to develop educational and entertaining mindfulness exercises for younger audiences.

Explore the True You: In English and French (Dutch to be added later); duration of tour 60-90 minutes; tickets €15 to €20 (20% discount for bookings before 12 May).

Museum of Infinite Realities (MOIR)
Rue du Marché aux Poulets 32

Photos: ©MOIR


Written by Sarah Crew and Achille Piedboeuf