Sydney, 2220. Picture it: you walk along our iconic harbour in Circular Quay, solar-powered lighting slowly beginning to fire up and illuminate the city as the sunset starts to glow shades of orange, pink and lilac above the water. The architecture is a mix of living walls that support native plant life, providing microclimates allowing local fauna to return to the region to feed and nest seamlessly into their urban surrounding. Elsewhere, sustainable materials that minimise heat production, possessing energy storing capabilities that capitalise on the local climate conditions to ensure continual energy access. The city is charged and alive.
The sound of traffic has been replaced with subtle hum of solar-powered vehicles and bird life. Gravitational technology has meant that low-flying transport has become the primary mode of getting around the city, freeing up the landscape for green spaces, bike paths and increased walkability. The digital and the organic are seamless. Reality itself is hyperlinked via cognitive networks that allow us to engage with our surroundings on multiple levels. Innovation is integral. Once you reach your destination – a floating bar with a glass base that allows you to see the myriad of sea life now thriving beneath the surface of Sydney Harbour, you watch the sun slowly disappear behind the city before ordering a glass of Johnnie Walker Blue Label…
If you could send a postcard back to yourself from this Eden-esque future, what would it say? A lot can happen in the space of 200 years and this Utopian concept of a Sydney of tomorrow is one that British-based artist Luke Halls shares in his work as part of Johnnie Walker Blue Label Cities Of The Future: a series of collaborative artworks depicting how, according to the artist, the world’s major cities could look like in the year 2220. Alongside Sydney, the futures of other thriving metropolises such as Singapore, Berlin, Hainan and even Mars are explored in phygital form.
A combination of geo-engineering that maximises the inherent power of the natural landscape, Hall’s vision runs tandem with the Blue Label philosophy of innovation, perfection, and seamless integration of experiences where the natural world meets technical mastery. The potential of each city is unlimited, its parameters limited only by the vision of its occupants.
Any journey worth the experience takes time and Hall’s depiction of a globally connected paradise is one that mimics a similar one taken by Johnnie Walker Blue Label scotch whisky. Two centuries of craftsmanship, starting when John Walker first opened his grocery store in rural Scotland and the honing of expertise to create its intense and unique flavour palate to create the ultimate Scotch whisky experience.
Much like the cities of the future achieve an equilibrium of hybridity, the Johnnie Walker Blue Label represents the expert blending of rare Scotch Whiskies from all over Scotland creating a true journey into the terroir of whisky’s home soil.
The two ends of this fascinating timeline – 200 years into the past and 200 years into the future – are manifested into the present on the surfaces of the Blue Label bottles. Hall’s vibrant illustrations of the 10 cities in total will be translated into a series of limited edition bottles that will become complex, hybrid surfaces encouraging an immersive and interactive experience of the Blue Label Cities vision.
By scanning the NFC on the bottle using your smartphone, you will be able to explore this futuristic landscape for yourself. A unique bottle number will unlock the features of the Blue Labels Cities universe meaning that only those with the keys to the city, so to speak, will be able to visit. And what will you find there? A prediction? A premonition? Or perhaps a promise of what’s to come? At the heart of all this – the Johnnie Walker Blue Label scotch whisky itself, connecting the past with the present while looking forward to a better future.
JOHNNIE WALKER BLUE LABEL SYDNEY 2220 CITIES OF THE FUTURE LIMITED EDITION DESIGN, AVAILABLE IN SELECT NATIONAL AND INDEPENDENT BOTTLE STORES, $319, SHOP NOW
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