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7 September 2018

Author: The Future Laboratory

Image: SPKTRM, New York


This week: Lucy McRae envisages the future of beauty, Garzez promotes its country of origin, SPKTRM commits to inclusivity, B&O brings a speaker to life, Nike empowers young Mexican women.

Biometric Mirror, Perfection exhibition at Science Gallery, Melbourne

1. Lucy McRae explores beauty ideals in the digital age

Melbourne – The sci-fi artist has created an installation that determines the‘perfect’ face based on the ideal ratios of beauty.

McRae’s Biometric Mirror project uses a facial recognition system to assess aspects of the viewer’s face, such as age, gender and facial expressions, which are then calibrated and transformed into a statistically and mathematically perfect face. The project draws on the ideals of Hollywood plastic surgeon Stephen R. Marquardt, whose Facial Masks theory uses mathematics to gauge the ratios of what is regarded as beautiful.

With algorithm-orientated apps and artificially intelligence devices affecting consumers’ perception of themselves, Biometric Mirror highlights further how technology is shaping new beauty ideals. For more, see our Algorithmic Beauty macrotrend.


Santiago Mendez and Garzez

2. Fashion brand Garzez takes pride in Venezuelan roots

Venezuela – Founded by 29-year-old fashion designer Alejandro Garcés, Garzez is a streetwear brand that looks to promote its country of origin. For his latest campaign Garcés has created garments reminiscent of tuki culture – a dance style native to Caracas, where dancers commonly wear colourful clothing and foreign logos.

In line with streetwear brand Vetements, which often parodies well-known labels, the collection includes reworkings of brand logos from Nike, Fila and Marlboro to make a statement about the current state of Venezuelan politics and the country’s faltering economy. Marlboro, for example, has been re-imagined as Malandro, meaning ‘a young criminal, punk or thug’ in Venezuelan culture.

‘My inspiration is humanity. I love all forms of cultural manifestation and I always look at them from the outside, with an anthropological point of view,’ Garcés told i-D.

First explored by LS:N Global in our Emerging Youth: Mexico market, designers across Latin America are using their garments as a platform to publicise the problems in their home country as well as taking a stand against the influence of global brands.

SPKTRM, New York

3. SPKTRM co-creates a foundation with real-life consumers

New York – SPKTRM is a new beauty brand making a commitment to greater inclusivity throughout the development of its products.

While many brands have this year launched campaigns celebrating people’s individual quirks, SPKTRM is going beyond conventional inclusivity by working with its real-life audience to create its first foundation. Through an Indiegogo campaign, the brand has asked backers to send in make-up free selfies and information about their skin's needs, which will be used to develop the colours and shades of the product. Those who contribute will also have the chance to have a foundation shade named after them.

SPKTRM's future product will be a light to medium foundation that allows for buildable coverage as required, with or without covering up characteristics such as freckles, wrinkles, moles and pimples. It is eventually expected to be available in over 50 different shades.

As part of its inclusivity commitment, SPKTRM has also pledged to ban retouching from all of its advertising as well as the phrase 'anti-aging', a move similarly made in 2017 by women’s beauty magazine Allure.

4. A rolling music speaker that encourages play

UK – Bang & Olufsen is continuing to demonstrate its artistic approach to audio devices with a playful touch-driven speaker that can be rolled from room to room.

The Beosound Edge, created in collaboration with furniture designer Michael Anastassiades, is a large, round speaker that can be rolled into position or affixed to a wall. Its in-built proximity sensors detect when a person moves towards it, illuminating the touch interface that allows music to be controlled with a tap. When placed on the ground, users can gently adjust the sound by rolling the device back and forth.

Originally explored in our macrotrend Awakening Tech, designers are continuing to merge technology and industrial design to create products for the home with magical-seeming abilities. Designer Karlijn Hoorneman developed the Powerplant, an elegant solar-powered flower that communicates with a home’s energy meter, blossoming when energy use is low and shutting down when it’s high.

Beosound Edge by Bang & Olufsen
Juntas Imparables 'Together Unstoppable' - Just Do It, PrettyBird production for Nike

5. Nike empowers young Mexican women

Mexico – As the company celebrates 30 years of its famed ‘Just Do It’ slogan, the sports brand has launched its first Nike Women campaign in Mexico.

The short spot, titled Junatas Imparables, or Together Unstoppable, features young women – including boxer Mariana Juárez and runner Paola Morán – battling societal expectations and sexism on the bustling streets of Mexico City. The campaign aims to demonstrate that the challenges of being a woman in what remains a largely male-dominated country are no obstacle for those wishing to pursue their goals.

The film kicks off a month-long campaign that will encourage young Mexican women to become involved in sports through a more social approach to activity. Women will be able to register a team of four to log workouts through the Nike Training Club App, Nike Run Club or through face-to-face sessions at the brand's dedicated Nike Women MX House. Once the challenge begins, teams can review their progress on a scoreboard and the winning team will receive a one-year Nike sponsorship.

To discover what's driving Mexico’s youth, explore our dedicated market here.

To future-proof your world, visit The Future Laboratory's forecasting platform LS:N Global for daily news, opinions, trends, sector specific insights, and strategic toolkits.


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