The 12 Way Mirror Project



Title: 12 Way Mirror
Type: Interactive Installation
Designer: Lida Theodorou
Installation Location: Playn eyewear at Boxpark pop-up mall, Shoreditch
Dates: 25th-26th July and again on the 1st-2nd August 2014 between 11am and 7pm.


In this day and age of social media and hyper connectivity, interactive installations have become increasingly popular as innovative ways to involve and engage with target demographics. As art installations, social experiments or marketing campaigns, interactive projects are broad enough to encompass a diverse range of applications including – but not limited to – dispersal of information, multimedia entertainment, education, or user data collection.

As part of a collaborative initiative between Queen Mary University of London’s Media and Arts Technology Programme and INITION, ambitious QMUL PhD student Lida Theodorou has created an innovative window installation which uses kinetic and tracking technology to gather data on the behavioural patterns of participants of interactive window displays

As part of Theodorou’s research, she explored various examples of existing interactive installations projects to discern which best integrated a social or collaborative element, rather than single-user projects like mobile apps.

Here’s the interactive installation in action


The project, on display at the Playn optical store in the Boxpark pop-up mall in Shoreditch, is comprised of a kinetic wall of 12 individual rectangular mirrors and a camera which uses a face-tracking algorithm to detect the faces of passers-by. When a person interacts with the installation, the wall of mirrors follows and replicates the direction of movement of their face.

Whilst the camera films the interactions, the software linked to the kinetic wall will collect the relevant behavioural data and assess the unique ways participants engage with the display. The data will then be used to evaluate how better to attract and maintain the attention of passers-by – especially in busy locations like airports, shopping centres and transit areas.

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“This project with Inition is an exciting exploration of new possibilities for interactive window displays. People often glance at themselves in shop windows as they pass; with this installation the window looks back at them,” – Pat Healey, Co-Director of Media and Arts Technology Programme, Queen Mary University of London.

“Adding interactivity to window displays to make them more engaging is something Inition work on for many of our customers. We’re especially excited for this installation which uses face tracking and arrays of servo controlled mirrors to play with the way viewers see themselves. Inition is excited to be hosting PhD students from QMULs creative technology course because, working collaboratively, we are able to explore a more diverse future of technological interaction,” – Stuart Cupit, Co-Founder, INITION.

“We are super excited about hosting Lida’s installation at our Showroom. The playful elements coupled with the high tech approach to the interactive mirrors, perfectly reflect our core values at PLAYN Eyewear. We can’t wait to see how our customers react and interact.” – Tess Alshibaya, PLAYN UK

“This is an experimental installation within the framework of my PhD. I am waiting with great anticipation the reactions of the viewers!” – Lida Theodorou, Designer


Boxpark pop-up mall’s website
Playn UK Facebook
Playn UK Twitter


Lida studied Applied mathematics in the University of Crete, in Greece. In 2012 she qualified with an MSc in Adaptive Architecture and Computation from the Bartlett School of Graduate studies, University College London. Following this, she worked in a small design company in London participating in the construction of an interactive installation and also cooperated with an architectural office in Greece, in the design of a parametric shelter for an architectural competition in Cyprus. Her research interests vary from interactive environments, to applications of technology for performance and installation, and from adaptive structures to biomimicry in design and architecture. She is currently a PhD researcher in Media Arts Technology at Queen Mary University of London.