Advertise Here

Monday, October 15, 2012

Retail Design – Play of Arches

Text & Photography: Antonino Cardillo


The arch, primary icon of architecture, archetype of construction and protection, and symbol of Italy throughout history, in its airy, slender variant, codified by 14th century Italian painting and often cited by De Chirico, rediscovers its double syntactic value of connection and separation of parts in this retail project.

Designed by Ar. Antonino Cardillo and spread across 350 sq. metres, the new retail store in Milan, Italy, appears to the visitor almost as an enchanted palace set in a rationalist building. As in the royal stable of Meknes or the mosque of Cordoba, a dense succession of parallel arches define a perspective.

.
The wall pierced by the sequence of arches gives rise to meandering spaces and exhibition areas and is augmented by technological lighting and climate-controlled design. Set in a metre square grid, each arched aperture articulates the space giving it multiplicity of uses: walkway, alcove for mannequins, displays, frontal and lateral hanging rail, etc.  

.

.

Light defines the space. The existing ceilings, free from the dazzle of down-lighters, are laid out limpidly in deep blue, whose blurred reflections record the luminous movement beneath. On the first floor, a corona of light radiates towards the ceiling from the interrupted walls of the rooms, defining their form. For the rest, the light is emitted and articulated by the displays inside the alcoves, which incorporate, above and below the floor, banks of LEDs focussed on objects, giving them prominence.

.

.

A delicate balancing of pearlescent grays, light mauve greens, intense magenta, crystalline marbles, real and false, as in a toy; and a flat blue, painted throughout the structure, forms the palette of the scenario. Thus, the coloured grays of the architecture are underpinned by the changing colours of the clothes and accessories.

Inspiration

.

Lastly, returning to classical iconography, the brand is displayed at the focal points of the building: at the rear of the stairs on the ground floor, just after the exit, and in the two opposing apses of the long gallery on the first floor.

.

.





Antonino Cardillo is an itinerant Italian architect. Active worldwide, through his works he explores the bonds between ancient and modern languages. His architectonic spaces attempt to get to a new syncretic synthesis, which reconciles different world views, beliefs, traditions and cultures: he interprets architecture as a way to connect people.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...