This Huge, Mesmerizing LED Display Sets a New Bar for Lobby Art

Second Story brings 'Unify' to Charlotte

Commissioned to design an original artwork for the lobby of a new high-rise building in Charlotte, N.C., Second Story decided to roll big. 

How big, you ask? 

Ginormous sums it up nicely.

The experience design agency delivered "Unify," an audio-visual experience of epic proportions. Billed as the world's largest 4K LED wall display, the piece measures 64 feet wide by 36 feet high. 

That huge screen generates colorful, cloud-like patterns based on an algorithm that never produces the same image twice, creating "a metaphor for community," according to this project video: 

Legacy Union

"Unify" greets employees and visitors to the 33-story Bank of America Tower in Legacy Union, Charlotte's ballyhooed 10-acre development touted in some circles as a model for the mixed-use neighborhood of the future. 

"Our intent was to stop people in their tracks, create contemplation, and inspire them to dwell in the lobby, transforming a transitory space into a community gathering," says Joel Krieger, executive creative director at Second Story.

His team engineered "Unify" through a process that allows colors, shapes and sounds to evolve in real-time, while maintaining a consistent aesthetic. Each pixel affects those around it to generate an ever-changing canvas. Thus, the algorithm itself serves as an additional, underlying metaphor, reflecting the vibrancy of a community in constant motion, building on its past to forge a brighter tomorrow. (That's one big-ass LED. Who knows how many metaphors are rolling around in there?) 

"People who work in the building every day will see this on their morning and evening commutes and lunch breaks," Krieger says. "This needed to be something that was calming, peaceful, positive—always interesting."

Hey, it beats passing a big clock and counting the hours until quittin' time!

"We are overwhelmed and saturated with advertising messages, both in digital channels and in public spaces," Krieger says. "It's so refreshing to see more developers use canvases like this to enhance the built environment for the people who live and work there."

In form and style, "Unify" recalls Second Story's immersive AV outing for Epson, which showcased the company's projection systems while inviting visitors to reconnect with nature. Such conceptual marketing is all the rage these days, with other recent examples including work from Bombay Sapphire, Havaianas, Lincoln and Thorne.

CREDITS

Second Story - Design
NanoLumens - LED display
Cenero - AV integration

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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