As a key focus for parent holding firm Kering, the house of Alexander McQueen, under the tillage of Creative Director Sarah Burton, has introduced a new design concept for their London flagship on Old Bond Street.
Designed in collaboration with architect Smiljan Radic, the 3 story store draws on Alexander McQueen’s fascination with nature. The main material employed is wood: oak and walnut, light and dark specifically. This appears on floors, ceilings and walls, intricately engineered to fit the space, with seams barely visible, as if knitted together. Lines are curved, evocative of the human body and of the organic nature of a landscape.
Glass cylinders pierce the interior, introducing reflection and light and forging a connection between the floors.
Like the house itself, experimentation is prized: a new cladding – ‘cotton-crete’ – a cotton-based papier mâché, has been developed for the space.
That experimentation will play out on the second floor which will host an experiential space designed to encourage the formation of a creative community. Here the Alexander McQueen creative process is explored through pieces from the house’s archive and current collections along with photography and artwork. This area will also be used to host a programme of exhibitions and talks aimed specifically at inspiring students, fundamental to the future of the house and, of course, to fashion more broadly. It is an integral part of the ethos of the brand that emergent talent is nurtured.
To keep the store fresh seasonally, like the changing of the leaves, Sarah Burton and her team will infuse the store with different fabrics – in dressing rooms and across the façade – referencing current collections and transforming the mood.
Chilean artist Marcela Correa is responsible for precious sculpture in alabaster, bronze, granite and wood. These are realised and positioned with extreme care and precise attention to detail, enriching the narrative and subliminally guiding visitors on their travels through the space.