High Performance Shopfronts

Rossa + Rossa's façade projection: "How it would be if a house was dreaming"

Rossa + Rossa's façade projection: "How it would be if a house was dreaming"

What would it be like if your façade could come to life and talk to your customers?  ‘Urban Screening’ is when you do exactly this- using the entire architectural façade of your building to create full-scale graphics or animations.  We look at the best examples of this new trend.

555 KUBIK Projection: “How it Would be if a House was Dreaming”, Façade Projection, Rossa + Rossa

For this projection, creative duo Rosa and Rosa from Germany, created a custom animation which used the architectural motifs of the Hamburg Kunsthalle with the concept to ‘dissolve and break through the strict architecture of O.M. Under’s Galerie der Gegenwart’.

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Following from Rossa + Rossa’s interventions, another amazingly creative and radical team who literally ‘take over’ buildings.

Blinkenlights have worked in all the major European cities, literally turning huge building façades into one giant computer screen.  With screens and lights controlled by complex coding, Blinkenlights create giant games of Tetris, Pac-man and old school Bat ‘n’ Ball which users can interact with and play using their mobile phones.

Blinkenlights' work animates buildings with iconic images from blinking eyes to the Mona Lisa to Tetris games

Blinkenlights' work animates buildings with iconic images from blinking eyes to the Mona Lisa to Tetris games

Blinkenlights' glowing arcade games illuminating building façades

Blinkenlights' glowing arcade games illuminating building façades

Moving from animation to a static and electronic to classical but no less dramatic, Prada’s pop-up store in Paris this summer references the neo-classical architecture of it’s Parisienne context. The store, designed by Roberto Baciocchi pays tribute to the Italian art critic and writer Apollinaire; a key member of the Montparnasse arts scene.

Prada Pop-up Store, Paris, view of façade

Prada Pop-up Store, Paris, view of façade

Famous for his collaborations with the likes of Pablo Picasso and Jean Cocteau, he was fascinated by the cubist painters and this tribute store takes the theme of the Mirabeau Bridge which is said to have inspired Apollinaire’s most iconic poem.

The bridge motif wraps itself around and into the interior in homage to the Mirabeau Bridge, Paris

The bridge motif wraps itself around and into the interior in homage to the Mirabeau Bridge, Paris

The façade, a printed trompe l’oil effect pictures a giant rendition of the Mirabreau bridge which literally clothes the building on the outside and wraps around and into the walls of the store on the inside.  Its silhouette frames the store, which also features mannequins depicting a scene straight from the dawn of the 20th century. The historic theme continues with the building’s marble, which came from the very first Prada store built in 1913.  What is so clever about this design is they way this elaborate and decorative style has been literally ‘flattened’ so that it becomes a giang facsimilie of the original.

Take-outs:

•  Façades are the prominent street presence of your brand and the various examples above show the amazing amount of potential they have

•  Rather than being purely self-promotional, the façade provides an opportunity to explore collaborations with creative teams/ artist- these events in themselves will have a greater impact on your brand’s status than conventional advertising

•  Think of  your façade day and night- make your building a landmark

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Words: Howard Sullivan, Research: Isobel Scott

Credits: Photography for Rossa + Rossa work from http://www.rossarossa.de
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