What do you get when you mix “60+ dancers, an original visual program created by Daft Punk’s light designers, a new pop symphony from one-half of the band N.A.S.A., and over 155 rooms of New York’s Standard Hotel”...?
Why, the Target Kaleidoscopic Fashion Spectacular, of course. Mother New York created and staged this amazing piece of Gesamtkunstwerk for Target’s 2010 Fall apparel collection.
Trying to figure out how they pulled it off is half of the fun, since each logistical question seems to lead to another:
First and foremost, how did they “network” the dance company!?! The dancers aren't actually dancing with or responding to each other—they’re just choreographed to look that way from outside the building. In fact, most of the dancers are alone in a hotel room, with a colored light that (from their perspective) flashes on and off, illuminating their room at random. Most likely, each dancer has just memorized a solo routine. But still, how are they receiving their dance cues? Is each room wired so that the dancer can hear the soundtrack, or is there some other system in place to help the dancers orient themselves and receive stimuli?
The kinetic feat aside, how did the lighting designers create the animation? Since the hotel façade only has 155 rooms, that means the designers only had 155 “pixels” to execute their animation with!! Did they need to create some kind of digital “map” or “template” that mirrored the hotel’s façade, to compose their animation upon? And finally, how (or where?) the heck did they bring all of the pieces together to practice the show and get everything so damn tight!?!?
Somewhere in Bavaria, from beyond the grave, I hope Wagner is breaking a glow-stick in salute.
Do yourself a favor and watch the video full-screen—with headphones on, if possible. It gets more envy inducing with each successive viewing.