words Douglas Murphy
Temporary, or “pop-up”, stores have been fashionable for a few years now, with brands as diverse as Dr Martens, Colette and Phaidon opening them this autumn, but Prada has a more interesting take on the concept. Designed by Italian architect Roberto Baciocchi, the Prada store looks like it has invaded the street corner on Place Beauvau with a facade covered in a collage of imagery and an awning resembling the famous Mirabeau bridge.
With the work of architects like Francis Soler and Edouard François, Paris has recently become quite a haven for postmodern design influenced by its rich architectural past. This store fits into this trend with a design based upon the iconic bridge – trompe-l’oeil images of this early iron structure are plastered onto surfaces all around the store with a flamboyant “pop” sensibility, the smoothness of surface contrasting with the grainy photographs, all the while playing games with Paris’ visual identity as the city of girders and rivets. The product displays are made to resemble museum glass cases and the floor in the entrance lobby mimics Prada’s original store in Milan from 1913.
The store is open until February 2010 on Place Beauvau 92, Paris