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3M's Radiant Light Film dazzles shoppers on Oxford Street

Escher-inspired window display uses stunning visual effects provided by Radiant Light Film to turn heads at Selfridges, the famous London store.
Radiant Light Film, from 3M, the diversified technology company, provided the inspiration for a designer-and-photographer team to create a fascinating, multi-coloured kaleidoscopic display in a window of Selfridges, one of London's most famous stores.

3M's Radiant Light Film, while transparent, reflects different colours depending on the viewing angle and light intensity. Available in two variants sea blue to pink and pink to gold both were used in the Selfridges installation. Radian Light Film can be applied to a multitude of different surfaces, to produce striking finished products, not only creating effective product differentiation through eye-catching packaging, but it can also be used on large-scale internal and external architectural installations; completely changing and enhancing their aesthetic appearance.

When seeking inspiration for the installation, designers Jim Rokos and Toby Summerskill wanted to create a display that made use of geometric patterns; basing their ideas around the 'circle limit' illustration by Escher. According to Rokos: "Toby had his heart set on working with mirrors from the start and, having worked with them on several past projects, I was able to help realise the idea we had in mind. Toby was also keen to reproduce the effect of a Kaleidoscope, hence the decision to utilise the ideas behind Escher's illustration."

He continues: "We had intended the pattern to be made up of fragments of the viewer, however, when Toby visited 3M he was amazed by the visual potential Radiant Light Film offered and we changed our direction in favour of the powerful and varied colours it produces. The effect of the film on the light box, with our kaleidoscope prototypes on top, was beautiful."

The display, which forms part of a seven-window collection commissioned by Selfridges and Designersblock, was installed to coincide with The London Design Festival, London Fashion Week and Frieze Art Fair.

The film's visual effect is achieved through the use of 3Ms multi-layer film technology to produce stunning, shimmering iridescent colour effects that change smoothly over the whole surface without any lines or discontinuities. 3Ms advanced adhesive, laminating and coating technology also allows it to be applied to the widest possible range of substrates, including difficult to bond, low-surface-energy plastics such as polypropylene or polyethylene.

Architects, interior designers, shop fitters, window dressers, product designers and advertisers looking for bold visual differentiation can create stunning visual concepts using Radiant Light Film which has already stimulated the design of a number of products including interior lighting installations, retail packaging and point of purchase displays.

3M's Industrial Adhesives and Tapes division is now preparing to launch the film into the architectural market. Marketing coordinator, Anna Kellachan, explains: "We already supply the film to designers for internal uses, such as glass partitions and interior panelling, and have had considerable interest from architects who want to use it for external glass applications. The film is currently undergoing testing to ensure it meets the safety standards required in the architectural market."

With a multitude of external architectural applications now on the horizon, 3M Radiant Light Film is set to dazzle more than just keen-eyed shoppers, as users start to realise how easy it is to enhance the aesthetic appeal of large surfaces without relying on complicated and expensive alternatives.

3M is a trademark of 3M Company


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