VAN Gogh: The Immersive Experience is off and running at York St Mary's, in Castlegate, York, after technical hitches were resolved over the weekend.

Having drawn 82,000 people in Naples and 150,000 in Brussels, the cutting-edge attraction is making its British debut in York, Britain's first UNESCO City of Media Arts, where it will be on show until January 5.

This 360-degree digital art installation uses technology to project animated displays on to the walls and alcoves of the former St Mary's Church, where black-out blinds and a dozen projectors have transformed the normally light and airy building into a constantly moving projected gallery of 200 of Vincent Van Gogh’s most famous 19th century works.

"A few technical glitches" had led to Saturday morning's opening being put back, but everything was ready to welcome the first paying visitors from 10am yesterday.

The central Nave houses a 35-minute immersive display, with a carpeted floor filled with deckchairs, from where visitors can enjoy the 390-degree displays seated, stood up or even lying down as the images move over the walls and floor.

Rather than merely projecting the original paintings, the immersive experience provides the twist of digitally animating the works: wheat sways in the breeze, water pours out of the confines of the painting’s frame, and the stars twirl and swirl in the night sky.

Overseeing the opening was the man behind the immersive project is Mario Iacampo, Belgian creative director and founder of Exhibition Hub, who worked with animation artists at Dirty Monitor to create the art experience.

"An 'immersive experience' isn't an exhibition and it's not a show, which I believe requires a live element; it's somewhere between the two," he said. "I wanted to create a Zen environment where you can sit down and watch at your leisure."