Puzzle Facade was part of Javier Lloret’s thesis project in the Interface Culture master’s program at the Universität für Künstlerische und Industrielle Gestaltung in Linz, Austria. Puzzle Façade brings the experience of solving a Rubik’s cube to the urban space. It transforms the façade of the Ars Electronica center in Linz into a giant Rubik’s cube, inviting passersby to engage with the interactive experience.
In Puzzle Façade, the player interacts with a specially designed interface cube that tracks rotation and orientation. These data are sent over Bluetooth to a computer that runs custom Puzzle Façade software that changes the lights and colors on the media façade in correlation with the handheld interface cube. Due to the nature of this building and its surroundings, the player is only able to see two sides. This factor increases the difficulty of solving the puzzle, but as the player is able to rotate and flip the interface-cube, it is not a blocking factor. (More information at puzzlefacade.com)
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“This project delights. The handheld scale of the Rubik’s cube (the graphic ‘input’) stands in marked contrast to the building-sized scale of the graphic output. The movability of the cube (flip it, twist it) contrasts with the immovable qualities of the building. We can only see two sides of the building (the ‘cube’) at a time, and suddenly we are Lilliputians remotely operating a very cumbersome, remotely controlled Goliath. More critically, this piece questions the immutability of architecturally-scaled objects. It reminds us that the public realm and the building surfaces that shape it are virtual canvases waiting to be occupied by creative spirits (and not just graffiti artists).”
Laurent Mignonneau, Christa Sommerer, Martin Kaltenbrunner (thesis project supervisors)
Gregor van Egdom (primary consultant/collaborator for interface cube design/production); Peter Calicher, Vicente Heras, Travis Kirton, Tijn Kooijmans, Bernardo Lloret, Jiskar Schmitz, Mr. Stock, Eric Toering, Jasper van Loenen; Ars Electronica (Andreas Pramboeck, Peter Holzkorn, Wolfgang) (collaborators)