For Lexus the aspect of design plays a vital role in its overall ambitions of presenting its enthusiasts with the finest in luxury automobiles. In its on-going pursuit of innovation, Lexus is pushing the boundaries of technology, craftsmanship and design to all new levels.Recently as part of Lexus’ Design initiatives, Lexus International announced that Sense-Wear of Emanuela Corti and Ivan Parati (Caravan) were selected by an elite judging committee as the first ever Grand Prix winner of the Lexus Design Award. The selection was made based on the four finalists’ presentations of their prototype works on the theme of “Senses”. Along with pieces by the other 11 finalists, the Grand Prix work was displayed at “Lexus – A Journey of the Senses”, an exhibit experience presented by Lexus at Milan Design Week 2015. This year’s Lexus Design Award drew a large number of submissions and a wide variety of wonderfully original ideas. In keeping with the theme of “Senses,” many submissions appealed to the five senses or emotional, rather than concrete, aspects of the human experience.
According to Takayuki Yoshitsugu, Chief Representative, Middle East and North Africa Representative Office, Toyota Motor Corporation, “I would like to congratulate Emanuela Corti and Ivan Parati for their winning project. Their exemplary skill, imagination and dedication has led to a great project. It also performs an important function, by developing clothing that can stimulate and improve awareness of our senses, while training us to better use them all. It gives us great pleasure to empower such talented designers and give them the opportunity to showcase their amazing ideas. Ultimately, for Lexus, design is not only about constantly striving to make even better cars, but also about using great design to make the world a better place.” At Milan Design Week, Lexus International also opened Lexus – A Journey of the Senses at Spazio Lexus at Torneria in Milan. The exhibit offered an amazing experience that awoke the senses to the excitement of the Lexus journey. The exhibit was created by world-renowned space designer Philippe Nigro with collaboration from acclaimed chef Hajime Yoneda.
Lexus – A Journey of the Senses presented a wide-ranging and exciting sensory experience with the theme of “Senses,” a concept that is fundamental to the Lexus brand. When space designer Philippe Nigro visited a Lexus plant, he was greatly impressed to learn how much care goes into not just the outer appearance but also into the unseen internal details. This insight led him to the ‘Inside-Out’ concept that enables visitors to experience beauty from every angle. Revealing things normally hidden from view, Lexus invited the visitor to make new discoveries and have new experiences in each of the three zones.
Zone 1: Engaging the Senses: A special version of the LF-SA concept introduced at the Geneva International Motor Show 2015 was displayed in this zone. The car, which was placed in the centre of a cocoon, was surrounded by numerous convex mirrors that caused unexpected reflections and illumination to create a flow of motion stimulating the imagination.
Zone 2: Exploring the Senses: Twelve finalist works, 4 prototypes, and 8 panels, chosen from among 1,171 entries from 72 countries were displayed in this zone; including the Grand Prix work “Sense-Wear” by Emanuela Corti and Ivan Parati (Caravan). Some of the prototypes offered interactive experiences for visitors. The space had a quiet, soothing atmosphere that allowed visitors to fully experience the originality and creativity of each work, and to reflect on its potential to shape the future.
Zone 3: Experience the 5 Senses: In this collaboration between Philippe Nigro and Hajime Yoneda, a tasting experience was added to the sensory journey. In creating a unique taste sensation, Chef Yoneda who is a Lexus owner himself, drew on his personal experiences of driving pleasure and travelling through nature, where all five senses are at their sharpest.
Scene 1: This scene was inspired by Chef Yoneda‘s own joy in driving in a Lexus, hurtling through the falling rain drops and feeling the exhilaration of becoming one with the natural beauty of a rainy day. Inside the cocoon, visitors saw and heard a startlingly realistic illusion of falling rain. As the ‘raindrops’ made out of sparkling candy dissolved in the visitors’ mouths, a refreshing sensation was produced, mimicking the feeling and sound of falling rain.
Scene 2: In this scene, Chef Yoneda took inspiration from the Lexus cockpit, envisioning the beauty of nature from the inside out and enveloping the visitor with a sense of comfort, liberation, and unity with nature. As they bit into the cacao butter crust of the ‘life force of a tree’, the aroma of fresh, verdant greenery washed over their senses. Hearing the quiet sounds of a forest around them, they experienced the beauty of a tree from the inside out.
Scene 3: As the culmination of the journey of the senses, this scene embodied Chef Yoneda’s respect for the Lexus commitment to excellence in car-making and its luxury brand spirit of hospitality. Looking down from starry space upon images of the earth on a table in the centre of the room, visitors drank the warm ‘Earth soup’ with its life-giving essence of vegetables, meat, and fish, sensing a glow from within as the soup’s warmth spreads through their bodies.
Additionally, a two-minute interactive, virtual walkthrough video of the exhibit was launched on the Lexus International website. The video highlighted each zone and provided a feel for the sensory experiences at the exhibit together with visitor reactions posted on social media.
Details of Lexus – A Journey of The Senses can be viewed at the Lexus International website at: http://www.lexus-int.com/lexus-design/design-events/. A virtual tour of Lexus – A Journey of The Senses can be taken at: http://www.lexus-int.com/lexus-design/virtual-journey/. Details of Lexus Design Award 2015 can be viewed at: http://www.lexus-int.com/lexus-design/lexus-design-award/