SYNUS DRAWS URBAN CUES FROM GRAFFITI ARTISANS
There's graffiti – and then there's graffiti.
Rising up from urban centers worldwide, the popular stencil graffiti movement has left its mark on the all-new Ford SYNUS concept.
Ford designers have integrated the vibrant, urban art form into the car's interior and exterior as an expression of the car's distinctive city vibe.
The art form – seen of the streets of London, Madrid, Los Angeles, and Paris – has quickly evolved from spray can expressionism to a respected art medium, showing up in museums and exhibits.
But unlike traditional urban graffiti – which often centers on a colorful tribute to the "tagger" or graffiti artist – stencil graffiti is about ideological expressions.
"Stencil graffiti when it's done right, really is about expressing the message, not about gaining fame," says Designer José Paris who created the Ford SYNUS concepts exterior cues. "A lot of times stencil graffiti is political in nature, but often it is done in fun, sort of tongue-in-cheek."
To that end, designers drew exterior inspiration from popular stencil artists worldwide and gave the concept distinct details from the vehicle's badging to its "Tough Love" license plate.
Inside, Chief Designer Joe Baker and Color and Materials Designer Elizabeth Salonen also applied the art form in whimsical fashion, utilizing stencil-like type in the car's instrument panel and upholstery.
On the car's floor mats, for example, they inscribed "Feet"; on the rear seat, "Sit"; and on the tailgate and gearshift "Push/Pull." Material care symbols and a "79 cents/yard," stencil also wrap the vehicle's centerline, poking fun at traditional selvage labels.
But one of the designers' favorite uses of stencil graffiti, in fact, was a decision to also stencil other messages meant to both tempt and amuse occupants.
"Do Not Disturb" graffiti can be found stenciled inside the SYNUS' rear compartment and other hidden areas, such as under headrests. "Do Not Open" and "Do Not Touch" warnings similarly adorn features such as seat backs, armrests and door handles.
"People always do what you tell them not to, hence "Do Not Sit" on the seat, and "Do Not Open" where the seats recline," Salonen said. "We wanted our messages to be more tongue-in-cheek, to be amusing and to draw people into the car to take a closer look."
Designers also wanted to reinforce the two themes of the car – contrasting the interior's soft side with the exterior's hardness.
"Stencil graffiti is meant to draw you in and unlike traditional graffiti is often small in scale, so it relates to the SYNUS really well," Paris said. "In this case, we're using it as a connection to the urban and youthful feel of the vehicle. It's relevant because this is a car for the urban environment."
FORD SYNUS FLAT PANEL LARGEST EVER WEDGED INTO NEW VEHICLE
At 45 inches, The SYNUS concept's flat panel LCD is the largest ever wedged into a vehicle.
Designers were so convinced that Sharp Electronic Corp.'s television goes to the heart of the "urban sanctuary" concept, they ditched the rear window to make room for it.
One look at the Aquos® Liquid Crystal television and it's easy to forget you're in a car.
Whether parked outside the stadium for the ultimate tailgate experience, or privately huddled inside to surf the internet, watch home movies – or even your surroundings via the concept's integrated security cameras – Sharp's Aquos® High Definition television has you covered.
Sharp's unique Advanced Super View/Black TFT panel not only boasts unprecedented resolution (1920x1080 pixels), but outdoor viewing is not hampered as the panel is resistant to reflected glare typically experienced with other flat panel designs. The technology is so advanced, in fact, it earned Sharp the 2004 Emmy Award for Technology and Engineering.
The Sharp LC-45GX6U also is completely "plug and play" ready, so hookup to any HDTV-capable Cable TV-system, or Ford SYNUS concept's Wi-Fi components is a snap. A fully integrated HDTV tuner and CableCARD™ compatibility also is built in, so there's no need for a separate cable box.
Additionally, the LC-TV boasts: a separate AVC System that houses all terminal connections; a PC Card slot which allows you to insert your digital media cards and view still images, and an exceptional image response time of less than 12 ms.
All of these technologies allow you to pull over, settle back and either watch your favorite show, passersby, or surf the net.