Esprit Façade, 2010

Hong Kong, China

The façade of the Esprit showroom on Hong Kong’s bustling Kowloon Street is medialised by means of circular pixels. Three of the four sides of the building are covered with elements, 10 centimetres in size, each of which is individually controlled and able to depict any RGB colour. A number of computational displays were designed based on what is going on in the inside of the building and projecting this visually into urban space.

The animations shown in a loop on the façade consist of three modules. Firstly there is text information on events which varies graphically in its computational design. A second element is provided by abstract colour patterns which shroud the building. These are created by scanning in pictures from the collection and having their colour tonalities analysed.

The third module is also based on pictures used by Esprit in its corporate communication. In contrast to the patterns of the second module these images are initially recognisable, though they subsequently dissolve into abstract traces of colour.

The content of the animation can be changed by means of a simple input interface. Once this is installed, a staff member can independently adapt the façade installation within a clearly defined computational and formal aesthetic framework.

The stylistic similarity between the various displays creates an unmistakable visual identity for the building and the brand. The computational design is defined by a clear visual language, with content varying based on the events and collections inside. The façade thus becomes a membrane between the inside and outside.