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Appointment to view: 'The Canvas Experiment'

Sports shoe brand Converse used almost 500 shoes to create an interactive 'screen' that could display images projected on to it that reacted to live music. Here's how the campaign was created.

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Perfect Fools, a Stockholm and Amsterdam-based creative studio, designed a campaign for the Converse brand aiming to produce a series of thirty second films each designed to demonstrate user interaction.

The agency created a canvas from 480 Chuck Taylor All Stars shoes and used analogue/digital crossover technology to enable live interaction with the screen.

The canvas weighed 400 kg, measuring 20 shoes high by 24 shoes wide. Each shoe was mounted on a servomotor and could rotate 180 degrees. One side of each shoe is red, the other blue, while the fronts are white.

Users could project images onto the surface and, by feeding music into the display, could create  equaliser graphics. The screen could also be linked to a webcam, to create a 'silhouette in sneakers'.

As part of the ‘Canvas’ campaign Converse commissioned three artists to create a series of pieces. German collective, Mentalgassi, devised an abstract interpretation of a flag using photography, graphic structures, different layers and colours.

Dutch artist, Diederik Kraaijeveld, created a one-of-a-kind Chuck Taylor All Stars portrait using wood flooring salvaged from a basketball court. While French artist Olivia Fremineau created a photography and art installation.

The artist involvement culminated in a Converse pop-up party in Paris with all three artworks brought together for the first time. French band, The Dodoz, plugged into the Canvas itself, working all 480 shoes as sound equalizers.

Alongside campaign launch activity, two Canvas window installations appeared in flagship Converse retailers, including the Courir store in Paris, and the Converse Store in Berlin. The displays interacted directly with the movements of passersby.

Parts of the Canvas are currently on display in retail outlets in Barcelona, Madrid and Milan and the full Canvas is scheduled to arrive in the UK this summer to celebrate retailer Schuh’s 30th Birthday.

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