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Camper Together Part 1: Jamie Hayon, Tokyo

Camper is a brand that I am constantly talking about, for my love of its continued creativity in its store design. I love the fact that brand principles are consistent in each store but that there is a new twist in each, each store has its own memorable identity. It’s not about standard roll-out.

Camper Together is a Model of Collaboration as the brand puts it. Their take on it is as follows; ”Camper Together is a model of collaboration between Camper and leading designers to create exclusive products and outstanding stores. Together responds to a new international reality that requires the capacity to integrate through design, different cultures and creative know-how into a single project together with and organization capable of communicating and distributing unique initiatives to a select global marketplace.”

The two stand out collaborations for me are with Spanish artist and designer, Jamie Hayon. His main creative studio in Valencia is where he develops his unique style focusing on blurring the lines between art, decoration and design bringing back a renaissance in finely-crafted, intricate objects within the context of contemporary design culture: creating furniture, product, interiors, sculptures and art Installations.

The first of a two part feature with Camper that I want to look at is the store he designed in Tokyo. It is inspired by classic Circus elements. It is straight out of a fictional film like Willy Wonka where intrigue is created by experimentation with scale, the use of fun items such as candy shaped door handles and curves to every wall and, table and surface.

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Harmonic Convergence, Miami Airport

Harmonic Convergance is an interactive sound and light installation created by American sound architect Christopher Janney at Miami Airport. The installation enhances the journey of passengers travelling from a car rental terminal to the main airport through a combination of light, colour and sound.

A ‘sonic portrait’ is created through speakers installed at intervals along the walkway that play sounds of tropical birds, thunderstorms and a variety of environmental noises relative to South Florida. Video sensors at either end of the walkway track movement and density of passengers moving through the space causing the composition of the sound environment to change as a response.

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Damir Doma, Paris, by March Studio

I recently stumbled upon this beautifully designed store by Melbourne based March Studio for Damir Doma in Paris. The brief was to follow a theme of multi layered ‘rough and refined’ as well as ‘rawness and purity’ which was the inspiration for Doma’s  fashion design at the time. Doma commissioned March Studio to design the boutique store after visiting the Paris store they designed for Aesop that made them internationally recognisable.

An old and new contrast soon fell in to place meeting the criteria set out by Doma and allowing for the site to retain its layers of history. Doma wanted customers to feel like they were in his Parisian apartment. The staircase is a focal point for the store, March Studio used marble in its purest form, slabs stacked on top of one another, adding to the multilayered feel of the store. Cleverly merchandised on each tread of the wide portion of staircase and framed with a sheet of blackened steel it certainly adds plenty of drama to the space whilst contrasting sharply against the remaining natural materials and colour palette. Continue Reading

Les Terrasses du Port, Marseille

Back in 2009 Hammerson, Global Asset Owners/Managers, acquired Les Terrasses du Port, Marseille. At the time it was billed as one of the largest shopping centre developments anticipated in France. The 52,000 m² centre provides 150 stores, 2,850 car parking spaces and a 260 metre-wide restaurant terrace overlooking the sea…..and it looks amazing! The vision for it now in 2012 is breathtaking.

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Agency Feature Part 1: The Uncarved Block – Melbourne Central Food Court

I have lost count of the amount of times I have used the above image as inspiration over the last 6 months for retail projects focusing on graphic language and tone of voice. I recently stumbled upon this article on Architecture.AU and found that the agency responsible for the project is The Uncarved Block. A relatively young agency, founded in 2010 by Philip Chia. The Uncarved Block’s holding page gives little away, other than a strong, contemporary impression that leaves the visitor intrigued to see more!

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Shed 5 Restaurant, Melbourne

I love the scale of this restaurant in Melbourne, Shed 5 has been designed by Loop Creative, with an industrial/warehouse look and feel. The project is currently still only at visualisation stage.

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Nike Camp Victory Pavilion – Oregon

Ok, I know I am a massive Nike Fan Boy. I have recently written about all they have been doing during the olympics with pop-up stores  But this Camp Victory is immense and certainly worth a mention.

The temporary installation was created for the Olympics and sits within the Oregon University campus. Severe geometric shapes illuminated by L.E.D lighting form the various facades of the building. Inside, scattered amongst the various display walls and glass tanks are more interactive innovations along the lines of what we have seen in the Fuelstation and House of Innovation.

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Does/is Retail Design Need to change?

Retail design creativity has to be driven by new innovative technological thinking. I’ve recently been considering the retail design situation in the high street and many recurring shopping centres. It’s becoming too static. Samey. New shopping centres like Westfield are regurgitating the same look and feel, and the same shopfits. Flagship has become roll out, or visa versa.

We work on Retail design and delivery in my agency, approving new shop designs in shopping centres all over the country. A common problem is that landlords are desperate to get big brands in to shopping centres and whilst they want the best look for their malls in terms of shop design, they do not want to rock the boat so much by demanding more elaborate, show stopping designs that results in tenants deciding to opt out. But as brand guardians, is of course our desire to see thought provoking or jaw dropping design.

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Nike + House of Innovation in Selfridges, London

Another day, another pop-up store by Nike. This time in Selfridges, London. The shop is more aligned with the fuel station concept of Box Park, showcasing  the brands latest digitally enabled products.

A series of events hosted by Nike’s global director for the Olympics, Martin Lotti, demonstrate the latest innovations to be used during the London 2012 Olympic games. Again the space is not so much about the display of physical product and is more so focused on multi channel and digital interventions to tell the brands latest story.

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Nike Pop-Up Liberty, London

Nike are one of the many pop-up shops appearing around London in preperation for the Olympics. The brand have recently acquired a beautiful atrium space in Liberty, London.

Their pop-up is perfectly fitting for the Liberty’s customer and the surrounding architecture. It has elegance and grace in the form of ornately detailed balloons that spiral up through the atrium. It juxtaposes the store interestingly however with the use of premium materials and illuminated feature walls behind bespoke contemporary/traditional furniture. Continue Reading