In October of 2011, Patten Studio created several kinetic installations in celebration of 20 years of Christian Louboutin for the windows of Barneys New Yorks Madison Avenue store.
In The Chase, a pair of Louboutins mens shoes pursues a pair of his womens shoes as they move through the window. To move the shoes we built an intricate series of magnets, motors and electronic circuitry. A powerful magnet is located inside each shoe, making it possible to move the shoes under electronic control. Originally we had planned to conceal this mechanism beneath a raised floor so the movement of the shoes would seem magical. After seeing the mechanism we created, Barneys asked us to leave it exposed so passersby could see how it worked. The mans shoes and the womans shoes are each controlled by a separate electronic circuit. These circuits communicate with each other to enact the pursuit.
In addition to the Chase, we created a series of kinetic elements for the other Louboutin windows at Barneys: A series of Louboutin shoes that spin under electronic control around a mannequins head, filing cabinets with motors inside that move their drawers in and out, and a door that slowly sways forward and backward.