To celebrate our 20 years of branded architecture, we hosted a PechaKucha on the “Future of Branded Space” at the Herman Miller Showroom this past week. It was a great event and we want to share some of it with you.
A PechaKucha is an informal presentation of 20 slides with 20 seconds per slide given on a particular subject. We decided upon the Future of Branded Space to reflect on a previous PechaKucha March Studio presented 10 years ago called Invasion of the Brand Snatchers, to see if our provocative projections came true. It was also an opportunity to project 20 years further into the future to see where branded space might take us.
For the “Future of Branded Space” we brought in experts from the fields of advertising, start ups, architecture and aerospace to comment on our current relationships to brands and where they are looking to go.
Bekah Jefferis, FNDR
"Brands can fill the void that is left by failed state."
We have been looking to technological innovation to save us from our current problems, but recently we have begun to see the cost of technological advancement. Instead of furthering human progress, technology has spurred economic progress while we are the ones for sale.
Younger generations are shifting away from traditional consumer brands, looking for brands that reflect their values instead of defining them. They are making the connection economy, built on creativity and generosity, rooted in trust and experiences, with the ability to connect with anyone to make opportunities.
Taking their cue from this, brands in the future will look to create opportunities in the voids left by our current systems.
Brent Watts, STRUCK
“Tell the story of who you are as a human being”
Our vision for the future has changed drastically from when we envisioned it as the Jetson’s during the 1960’s. Technology has isolated us, making us feel lonely. With all the digital communications, how do we define who we are as human beings? We want to associate the same values and principals with others who have the same human experience as we have. The rise of experience pop-ups show the desire to connect physically with our environments and each other. Brands are the curators of experience for us.
Jonathan Lo, Virgin Orbit
“Space is the wild west”
Our visions of space were developed by Hollywood and influenced by our experiences as children at Captain Eo’s in Disneyland. Brands entered space exploration the same time we did. Neil Armstrong wore an Omega watch on the Moon before sponsorship was a consideration. Brands have raced to space in the same fashion nations have.
Tracing the same path as brands on Earth, brands in space are focusing on experiences. With Red Bull Stratos, Felix Baumgartner dove from 24 miles above the ground, breaking multiple world records. Elon Musk broke the internet by launching a Tesla in his latest SpaceX launch. Space is the wild west – there are no expectations. Brands are developing their impact on these new environments as they go. The effort is to fuse art and engineering to develop a better branded experience in space.
Sherry Hoffman & Lara Hoad, March Studio
“Telling stories through architecture”
Branded architecture is not a new phenomenon. Since Citroen took over the Eiffel Tower in 1925, brands have been making their mark on our public spaces. Looking back at where we thought we would be 10 years ago in our last PechaKucha, brands assimilation into our public space is complete. Examples of Apple’s town square retail concepts being rolled out in our urban centers have redefined what was once free space.
With advancements in technology, our urban fabrics are going to change. Amazon’s successful drone delivery has opened up a new infrastructure channel that needs to connect to our homes and businesses. Nissan’s electric cars can plug into streets and power your home with energy stored from your commute. The rise of augmented reality can give rise to ultra minimalist architecture, as a backdrop for layers of digital information.
With brands playing larger roles in our lives and in our public spaces there is great opportunity for branded architecture to define our urban experiences and contribute to our communities.
So where to from here? We do not have a definitive answer – that is part of the fun of a PechaKucha. We will keep exploring these questions and the social, political, economic, and environmental aspects that shape our homes, offices, and cities. To us, the future of branded space looks like opportunity.
Cheers to the next 20 years of branded architecture!