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Lacoste's La Machine

As part of the launch of the first menswear fragrance from the classic brand, New York's Grand Central station held a new exhibition utilising digital art

In celebration of Eau de Lacoste L.12.12, the French brand’s first ever set collection of fragrances for men launched recently in New York, a transformative process was vividly brought to life in the epic surroundings of Grand Central station via the new interactive visual installation, entitled: La Machine L.12.12. Created by New York based design team Tronic, the sculpture is a unique interactive experience (constructed from hexagonal panels resembling the scales of a crocodile) which aims to represent a transformation of their iconic polo shirt (the inspiration for the collection) to a fragrance using special user-generated videos.

The public were invited to take part in the Lacoste: La Machine L.12.12 experience by simply uploading their data and fragrance colour (a choice of white, blue and green) online whereupon the machine translates the unique information into a short video. Users can then watch as their video is remixed live – a process filmed by 2-3 cameras – before being shown to the public. With 35,000 limited time slots available, you can share their 20 seconds of fame with friends via social media networks Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Out in Grand Central station on the launch night after a surprise performance from Grandmaster Flash with a team of dancers and a special appearance from actor Max Mighella, Dazed caught up with Antoine Delgrange, the Global Marketing Director of Lacoste Fragrances to find out more...

Dazed Digital: Why have you chosen the three colours for the fragrances?
Antoine Delgrange: They embody the mood of Lacoste and the Lacoste consumer - so we chose White for pure, Green is more relaxed, and Blue is more powerful and intense. White because of the history of Lacoste's iconic polo shirt in 1927 which was white. So it's historically the colour of Lacoste. Blue was to give more of a powerful deeper mood.

DD: Did you think they were particularly masculine colours?
Antoine Delgrange: Yes - overall yes, we did some men's consumer research and it was proven to be very successful.

DD: So the digital sculpture tonight, how did that tie in?
Antoine Delgrange: It all started with the transformation of the polo shirt into a bottle - so you will see the bottle, the crocodile... the idea was to take the same analogy and use it for a digital event, we saw a special transformation in the video, but more in the visual world to really go back a the core of the brand, which was this unique bottle - 12.12.

DD: As it's such a traditional brand, having been going for so long - why was digital art a relevant platform for the new launch?
Antoine Delgrange: Because the idea we wanted was also to be more in touch with our new consumer base, to rejuvenate it and go beyond traditional marketing. We wanted to be at the forefront of digital innovation, not only playing with Facebook but with a physical piece of art, leveraging all our fans and digital and physical marketing.

DD: Out of the three, which is your personal favourite?
Antoine Delgrange: Blue, which is the one I'm wearing tonight - it has an aquatic touch of peppermint, so it's more powerful - it's very intense and deep.

Having launched in the UK earlier in April 2011, the US launch of the Eau de Lacoste L.12.12 collection kicks off alongside the La Machine L.12.12 by Lacoste at New York’s Grand Central Terminal in September 2011