New & Noteworthy

The Appeal of the Unexpected

Lately, many retail store designs have centered around very artistic sculptural works
out of many different types of materials. These elements create visual impact either
in store windows, store entry ways and/or in unexpected locations throughout,
drawing customers in and adding to the mood and feel of the shopping experience.
Many times these are one offs for flagship stores from new or found materials.
Sometimes they are created expressly for the theme of the retail environment and 
other times they highlight a local artists work.

Issey Miyake features ‘sticks’ installation by Emmanuelle Moureaux

Issey Miyake features ‘sticks’ installation by Emmanuelle Moureaux

The custom installation sculpture or lighting fixture adds so much to the retail space
and definitely increases foot traffic within store. This is the reason retailers create
exciting store window designs. This is the reason that people are drawn into an
Urban Outfitters or Anthropologie. Their store windows (and interiors) are typically
chock full of sculptural installations created by their visual merchandising teams
out of unexpected and found objects.

Anthropologie, St. Louis, MO – clothespin dress window installation

Urban Outfitters-  Sea of Shoes window display with wave sculpture

Shoppers are met with a sea of options as they make their way through the mall
or down the street. To catch their attention, retailers have to stimulate the casual
passerby with an exciting visual display in order to really be seen amongst all of
the other visual clutter around them.

Magico Imperial, Lavale, Quebec Canada – Tree sculpture display

Magico Imperial, Laval, Quebec Canada – Sculptural folded paper inspired wall

It’s exciting to see that many visual merchandisers are incorporating found objects, 
creating new artworks and highlighting the artwork of various artists in their stores. This 
makes the work that they do even more multi-dimensional and connects with customers in 
a new way, appealing to their senses of individuality and the feeling that they have come upon 
a unique experience. They are not only shopping, they are experiencing art at the same time.

Vancouver, Canada-based women’s fashion retailer Aritzia – Wall Hanging

Vancouver, Canada-based women’s fashion retailer Aritzia – Giant hand sculpture


Share this article

    Go back to main content | Go back to main navigation

    Go back to main content | Go back to main navigation