Infiniti QX50 – Japanese Born
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For Infiniti's installation at the 2018 Concours d'Elegance, Munkowitz, VT Pro Design and the Tools of North America used cutting-edge projection mapping to celebrate Infinti's Japanese heritage and its influence on the car's design. The Infiniti QX50 car was a canvas for Japanese-inspired imagery conceived by the Munky and his dream team of design wizards. 

In 2018 they had an opportunity to do more – to elevate the spectacle and the Infiniti brand. To make the car really and truly come alive. So they brought movement and dynamism into the car through an immersive design experience that plunged the audience into the very DNA of Infiniti. Because luxury is something their audience knows well. This was innovation at its best — the cutting edge technology of Infiniti’s future fused with the beautiful Japanese culture of its roots. 

Tool and Crispin Porter + Bogusky have collaborated on this event three years in a row, helping Infiniti continually push the limits of innovation in its pavilion at Pebble Beach. This is the first time Infiniti is truly embracing its Japanese heritage, and the team loved this union of technology and tradition, crafting a purely japanese statement that encapsulated everything Infiniti represents.






THE APPROACH

The design of the car already had an elegant movement built in, which allowed the eye to move across the form in a dynamic way. It’s a serendipitous surface — an elegant flow of lines across the body, funky curves, and interesting protrusions that organically guide the viewer across the animations. 

The volumetric video projection sought to not only highlight the car, but vibrantly bring it to life. The design team created illusions, playing with depth and surrealism to interpret the design of the car in an unexpected way — revealing what stirs beneath the hood, the hybrid nature of its development, and the minds that brought it there – taking the car to a new place entirely.

The most inspiring component was not merely the juxtaposition of one style next to another, but the true intersection of styles and genres. How they fit together – how one emerges from the next. Because It’s not a linear story so much as a narrative cross-pollination, a push and pull unconstrained by any genre restrictions. You cannot have the present without the past, the future without the present, one design style without the other — much like the heart of modern Japanese culture.






THE DESIGN

The team was looking at an undulating evolution between Classic Japanese Art, Intelligent Data, and Future Forward Progression. They were interested in how dots and pixels move and breathe, cascading around the surface, as much as they were riveted by the patterns found in organic phenomena — rain, fog, mountains, cherry blossoms, and water.

They sought to determine the space between the three cornerstone concepts and tracing where they connect. It was a matter of seeing one style through another’s eyes. Think ultra-modern tech-inspired renders refracted through a Japanese koi pond. The unmistakable anime style of wind, fog, and rain – hand-drawn art that coalesces with a data fabric world. A dot growing to become the red Japanese sun that hangs down over a rippled sea and through to the other side. Seeing the reflection of what feels like it could be a fish, but is really a painted piece of silk. Lines pulsate like a moving membrane across the surface of the car, transforming into a glowing exoskeleton. 

We wanted our audience to feel like they’re coming across a portal into a world of Infiniti. Animations of Japan’s past and future folding into each other and sweeping across two sides of the car and the wall behind, a seamless mapping generated by the power of the three 20,000 Lumen 4K projectors. 






DIRECTOR




INFINITY CREDIT LIST

Commissioned by: Infiniti / OMD
Agency: Crispin Porter + Bogusky
Production: Tool of North America
Director: GMUNK
Executive Producer: Adam Baskin
Producer: Chris Kaliszewski
3D Animation: Michael Rigley, Chris Bjerre, Ryan Hawthorne
2D Animation: Peiter Hergert
Promo Editorial: Stitch Editorial
Projection Mapping: VT Pro Design
Live Action Production: Hummingbird
Director of Photography: Drew Bienemann
Process Photography: Ryan Hawthorne