In his oft-referenced essay Here Is New York, E.B. White mentions that New York offers its residents the prizes of loneliness and privacy. In New York, you can stand among thousands and feel complete solitude. This can be alienating, but it can also be a gift. Strange angles and odd glimpses afford New Yorkers unique moments of intimacy. Our window is not about what is inside, but about what you see when you look through it. City Beat is an uncomplicated yet beautifully crafted experience where strangers catching glimpses of each other can share in a moment of connection and simple delight.
This project was done in collaboration with Yuan Chen, Lindsey Piscitell and Dimosthenis Markopoulos.
We wanted to make the interaction of a window display very simple, so that people can interact with one another without making it complicated. The idea was to just have two people looking at one another through the window, and making the heart 'Beat'. This way, they would have to stop what they were doing in their busy time and take a moment to interact with the stranger, or friend, across from them.
By doing so, we made the heart out of cardboard triangles, to make it light to take to the window display, and put Neo-pixels that were programmed to beat depending on which side of the window is being touched. When both sides are being touched, the heart lights up completely. This was done by putting the Neo-pixels in the heart, and put red fabric over it to make it look seamless.