San Diego Dazzles Its New Rental Car Center With 2,100 E Ink Prism Tiles

Airport rental car centers tend to be big, bland concrete blocks that are anything but visual treats, but the new one at San Diego International Airport is a decided departure – with the exterior animated by some 2,100 E Ink Prism tiles.

The public artwork, just launched, turns the 1,500-foot long front of the parking garage into a landmark mural. Called DAZZLE, the art installation is a nod to the “razzle dazzle” camouflage technique used during World War I in the waters off San Diego, to alter the perception of ships to the enemy by visually scrambling their shapes and outlines. It was a widely used technique by the British and US navies during the Great War, not exclusive to San Diego.

“Our artist approach for DAZZLE was inspired by the historic form of ship camouflage, but our breakthrough came with the idea of applying e-Paper technology to the façade. We knew that E Ink technology was the perfect partner to help us achieve our design, given its flexible and extremely durable properties,” says Nik Hafermaas, co-founder of Ueberall International and principal project artist. “We’ve worked with E Ink on a number of projects so we’re thrilled to reveal the largest deployment of E Ink Prism in the world.”

Says a press release:

The physical components of DAZZLE include e-Paper tiles, wireless transmitters and a host computer. The e-Paper tiles are designed in a parallelogram shape and arranged in algorithmic distances to create an overall dynamic visual effect, even when the pixels are still. Each tile is integrated with a solar cell for power, electronics for operation and wireless communication to create each unique animation developed by the artists. The animations can evoke water ripples, moving traffic, dancing snowflakes or shifting geometries.

“This is the first large-scale deployment of E Ink’s Prism technology that will be accessible to the public view. It’s a testament to the unique value Prism creates in architectural design, enabling designers to create eco-friendly, durable and visually exciting designs that transform buildings and structures,” says Paul Apen, Chief Strategy Officer at E Ink. “DAZZLE is the perfect example of how E Ink’s Prism can deliver a completely new and dynamic one-of-a-kind experience, transforming a once static space into something dynamic and spectacular.”

Very nice!

Changi Airport Previews Incredible 70-Metre Immersive LED Wall

Singapore’s Changi Airport has started providing peaks inside the new Terminal 4, which is set to open before the end of this year. One of the big features is a vast immersive fine pitch LED video wall at the security screening area.

Instead of small screens and talking flat ladies droning on endlessly about what you need pull out of your carry ons (a staple at many, many airports), the content is a 50-minute long, custom-created playlist of 17 targeted pieces. It is montages of scenes from around the region and in Singapore, and a Rube Goldberg-ish animation about what happens with checked bags.

Source: Changi Airport Group

Based on the video, it looks like the content elements are all interconnected by a piece that looks and sounds a bit like kinetic flip-discs.

There is another LED wall embedded in a retail zone that shows a traditional Singapore streetscape. It comes alive and plays a film short on a schedule.

The wall above T4’s centralized security screening area is a 6mm pixel pitch NanoLumens display, and the Atlanta company also provided the 10-meter-wide by 6-meter-tall 4mm pitch display for the streetscape – the screen built directly into a shophouse facade with several faux building fronts that highlight the island nation’s architectural evolution from the 1880’s to the 1950’s.

The integrator on the project was Singapore-based Electronics & Engineering PTE LTD.

The 70m wall’s content was created by Montreal’s Moment Factory, which has done incredible work in all kinds of venues. The company also did the streetscape video.

Changi is consistently rated as the world’s best airport, even besting Newark and glorious LaGuardia! This is as good as I have seen in an airport job, and why I think it works better than LAX’s international terminal (a very high profile digital project) is that the big video wall is precisely in a position where it will be seen and where it will entertain people. Security screening lines are a massive irritant, and this content will engage and distract people as they trudge through the snaking line. By comparison, LAX’s screens are up high, post screening, in an area where people are on the move.

No official indications on the tech used or integrators behind this, but I am reliably told the big 70-metre display is a 6mm pitch NanoLumens product, and the streetscape one is also Nano’s.

Here’s a fly-through video of the new terminal, which is loaded with tech designed to streamline and improve the passenger journey …