The Montagues versus the Capulets. The Sharks versus the Jets. Team Edward versus Team Jacob. Life can get messy when you don’t see eye to eye. For the easily disgruntled, the C.O.P. suit aims to be both armor and mode of disruption, offering not only protection but also a means of voicing your discontent. Inspired by the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, the “personalized protest wear” is also completely self-powered. It uses kinetic energy from common protesting gestures (fist pumping, chest thumping, baton swinging) to power the built-in megaphone, making rioting “hard on the ears, but easy on the conscience,” according to its inventors.
CALL THE C.O.P.
The C.O.P. is the creation of a group of students—Elena Gianni, Benoit Espinola, and Ulrik A. Hogrebe—from the Copenhagen Institute of Interactive Design. Charged to devise a high-tech wearable that made a comment on the ongoing climate debate, the trio opted to address the ritual “dance” between protestor and enforcer.
The sleeve generates its energy by feeding off arm movement or, if things get rowdy, physical impact.
The suit itself consists of a megaphone-mounted helmet that draws its power from an attached, reinforced sleeve. In turn, the sleeve generates its energy by feeding off arm movement or, if the situation gets rowdy, physical impact.
“The suit is designed as a purposefully ambiguous and slightly ironic artifact,” note the designers, who intentionally evoked the fetishistic visual language of both protester and police. “[It’s] a comment on the similarity of the means each side employs,” they add.