The Lexus YET Experience at Milan Design Week came full circle with an evening dedicated to exploring the central role of Imaginative Technology plays in defining the brand, going beyond the development of cars to find expression in ground-breaking and futuristic design and engineering concepts.
Lexus took its guests to Milan’s Baxter flagship showroom, a historic former movie theatre that has been reborn as a fresh and dynamic retail centre for the best in contemporary furniture and design. Baxter opened its doors in 2015 and quickly established itself as a symbol of quality and style. For Milan Design Week the space was transformed into an enchanted forest, where Lexus’ guests enjoyed Omotenashi hospitality at a gourmet dinner.
The evening included a showcase presentation of two special projects which link the Lexus brand to the world of international cinema: the SKYJET and the Lexus Short Films series.
Lexus helped create SKYJET, a futuristic flying pursuit craft, as part of its partnership with the EuropaCorp film studio, working with the creative team for the up-coming Luc Besson science fiction blockbuster, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Starring Cara Delevingne and Dane DeHaan, the movie is set for international release this summer.
Laurent Bouzige from Lexus’ ED2 design centre in the South France was available for an extensive Q&A session on the Lexus SKYJET, having led the team that turned Luc Besson’s original vision and EuropaCorp’s design into a screen-ready model. The project also benefited from input from Lexus’ Chief Engineer Takeaki Kato, who helped identify and develop SKYJET’s futuristic but believable technologies
This innovative collaboration has produced a vehicle that is grounded in reality, but reflects the world of Valerian, 700 years in the future. As such, it draws on technology thinking that Lexus is applying to its future product range, exploring exciting new developments in Artificial Intelligence and HMI design – the interfaces between man and machine.
A model of the SKYJET was on view for guests throughout the evening, displaying styling cues that clearly express Lexus’ contemporary design language. It was presented in a unique setting and projecting excellence in technological advancement and innovation that is yet sympathetic to nature.
Guests were also given a special insight into the Lexus Short Films series, an annual project launched in 2013 in partnership with The Weinstein Company to nurture and provide a platform for up-coming film-makers.
There were more than 4,400 entries for the latest, third series, from which four directors were commissioned to produce new works. Two of these films were given their European premiere as part of the Lexus YET Experience in Milan, prior to their public release in June.
Irish director Kev Cahill gave a personal introduction to his work, A Nation Holds its Breath, and there was also an exclusive preview screening of GAME, directed by Jennie Donohoe.
The theme and entry details for the fourth Lexus Short Films series will be announced on June 1 2017.