Issue #6

Biometrical Art

Art with a heartbeat humanizes creative event experiences.

The experiential art world is opening up, with the physical and digital worlds coming together in immersive and creative ways that are taking engagement to new depths. Interactions are, in turn, becoming more customized and personalized, too. For marketers, the result is an experiential—and data-driven— work of art.

Take Infiniti’s recent activation at Pebble Beach Automotive Week that through armband devices and other feedback, measured attendees’ emotions as they viewed an Infiniti on display and then transformed those “feelings” into digital artwork on LED screens. And there was “Feel the Beat,” a UAE Ministry of Health campaign that encouraged consumers to get their heart monitored, and then set the sound of their heartbeats to music—turning each individual heartbeat into a custom track for each person. At the first-ever Lions Innovation Festival, MEC’s EmotiCannes live art installation consisted of a “zoomorphic” sculpture of small screens that collected social media activity of the 10,000-plus festival attendees, analyzed it, and revealed them in real-time as “meaningful insights into the prevailing mood” of the crowd, changing colors and shifting its shape.

Who can forget Stella Artois’ “Reach for the Stars” influencer experience, where in a darkened room lit by “stars” hung from the ceiling, attendees could reach up and the glowing orbs would suddenly descend toward them—as if they were alive. Or, the bio-responsive plants in a pop-up forest in London’s Soho district that unfurled like a human interaction as people walked through it. And then there was Hyper Thread’s hammocks at The Lab at Panorama Festival in New York City with embedded sensors that detected your swings, with your actions modifying parts of songs that cycled through the experience. There are cool tools in the space worth keeping in the experiential playbook, too, including Crafted by My Heart, a ring designed from the wearer’s heartbeat, that puts a personalized touch on premiums. And Emotive, which activated at Adobe MAX, detects your brain activity while being creative and generates a visualization unique to you.

Beyond engagement, heart monitoring and sensors let marketers collect rich data about the feelings and decision-making processes of attendees—insights that can reveal unbiased opinions on your brand.

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