Challenge:  With minimal direction from the client, create a blue-sky concept for retail windows to coincide with the launch of James Harden’s first signature shoe.

The concept selected by adidas, referred to as “The Icon”, was based around a gigantic animatronic head modeled after James Harden, designed to react to customer interactions with the storefront window. Evolving through several design concepts, the head was ultimately modeled in a style using polygonal design cues from the B-52 Bomber and Christopher Nolan’s BatMobile, with the intentional purpose of avoiding realism.

To engage consumers, a window-mounted sensor located behind storefront glass attracted the passersby to place their hand on the window. As this interaction took place, the head would split apart and rise up, unveiling the shoe hidden within, while one of eight glitched and stylized video loops played on the LED wall behind it. To address space constraints within some window fronts, an alternate design was created to live in-store, on the sales floor. Starch handled the project management, logistics and planning involved in installing seven simultaneous activations in stores spanning North America for their release following Black Friday.