Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Cos, London

The third scheme as part of the London Festival of Architecture can be seen at Cos, along Regent street. The decal reads "Because we like the same things we thought it would be fun for Spacelab who are great at Architecture to design the window for us". I am not sure 'fun' is the word I would use, 'interesting' perhaps, and there is no doubt that Spacelab do create, actually incredible Architecture. I am, of course pleased to see another interesting collaboration happening here and that retailers are yet again utilising 'localised' creativity. These collaborations of course are incredibly important for several reasons. Localised Architects / Designers have the opportunity to work with retailers on projects that they wouldn't normally work on and this in turn breathes new life and creativity back into the stores and store windows. Companies or individuals who would not normally work in this area are being encouraged to do so and therefore enhance the differentiation of their visual offer rather than retailers continuing along the lines of 'bland branding'. We may, just may then finally see an end to the dreadful corporate look of globalisation and over zealous marketing that plagues and pollutes so many of our cities stores worldwide. I would however suggest that when these projects do happen, and of course they are fantastic, that the Visual Merchandisers / Display crew need to be included too. What is missing here are the nuances that these guys would have 'picked up'........for example there is no product, humour, interest, aspiration, desirability, or combination of any of these or. a real understanding of the lack of them either and therefore what we are left with are simply the Architects concept and we as shoppers also are a little more savvy.

1 comment:

  1. I felt the same, Jonathan. At first sight, I felt something missing. I wanted to observe the window scheme as a part of VM. Thus, I expected the window would be related to the floor / in-store merchandising. However, the window was not linked to the floor which is different from what I predicted, although that was eye-catching.. In my opinion, windows of retail shops could entertain customers yet they still need to encourage customers to enter the shop and buy merchandise. So if VM team was involved in this project, it might be better and meaningful for retailers in terms of VM, as you suggest.


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