Putting the AR in art 🎨
ONE TO WATCH
Rag & Bone has joined the ranks of designers choosing to forgo traditional fashion week and instead presented its AW19 runway show in the form of an eight-minute film. Produced by creative technologist Ross Goodwin and Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, the film is self-edited and directed by an AI machine that identifies as ‘A Distinguished Guest.’ The result is A Last Supper, a glitchy film chronicling a dinner party hosted by Rag & Bone that has a pixelated overlay prancing around fashionable dinner guests clothed in the brand’s latest pieces. Trippy yet effective, Rag & Bone’s AI-inspired video feels like a fashion show set in the future.
Just in time for London’s Fashion Week, LEGO opened an adult clothing pop up called “The Missing Piece.” Inspired by its name, the store was actually completely empty except for a large Snapchat QR code on display. Once visitors snapped the code, they were given access to an augmented reality fashion boutique that included an arcade machine, an interactive DJ booth, and LEGO mannequins sporting styles available for purchase by selecting the virtual “Shop Now” button. As retail continues down the path of experiential, this paradoxical brick-and-mortar virtual pop up combines the best of both worlds.
Back for the first time since its inaugural 2017 event, Desert X is a series of art installations in the Coachella valley featuring artists like Sterling Ruby, Pia Camil, Julian Hoeber and more. Our favorite parts of the exhibition are two works created by artist Nancy Baker Cahill, Revolutions and Margin ofError, which are one-of-a-kind augmented reality experiences. Utilizing two distinct landscapes—Palm Spring’s iconic wind turbines and the Salton Sea—alongside an app called 4th Wall, viewers can unlock Cahill’s creations digitally. Pointing the camera at the blades of the wind turbines causes viewers to see explosions of color appear while at the Salton Sea they’ll see a nebulous mass of color. These “installations” tease a whole new genre of modern art that merges the physical and digital worlds through AR technology.
IN OUR CARTS
From ugly sneakers to dirty sneakers? Last year we saw the rise of ugly sneaker trend, which had Balenciaga’s Triple S Trainers and adidas Falcons on the feet of every influencer and fashionista worth their salt. This year, however, things are getting a bit grungier: Converse recently debuted its Converse One Star OX LTD, which are not only distressed but feature gray accents reminiscent of duct tape. Though this trend originally came en vogue around the same time as “ugly” sneakers, it never caught on. However, the rise of “sleazecore”—the trend of dressing poorly on purpose—has the potential to give it new life.
While likes and engagement are nice, cash is even better. Tippin.me is a new Chrome extension made for Twitter that would allow users to send small sums of money to other Twitter users whose content they like with no transaction fees. When users enable the extension, a lightning bolt appears next to the “like” and “retweet” icons, giving them the option to send Bitcoin over Twitter via the Bitcoin Lightning Network. To collect their digital tips, users simply need to also download the Tippin.me extension and cash out to their Bitcoin wallet. While Bitcoin itself still seems to be on the road to recovery, the blockchain technology it rests upon is proving to have plenty of valuable potential.
A new interactive map from academic journal Nature Communications allows viewers to see what future cities in North America will be like in 60 years due to climate change. Unlike other numerical projections that are hard to visualize, the map matches cities with a similar climate that already exists today. For example, in 60 years, San Francisco will be similar to Palos Verdes in Southern California, meaning it will be 40% drier. Showcasing the effects of climate change in a digestible and easy-to-understand format, the map is a necessary and powerful tool in educating consumers about the future.