Erwin Sattler, a world renowned clock-maker known for its artistry and craftsmanship has a long history of sophisticated designs which last till the end of time. For their new store, a location which can appreciate the legacy of Erwin Sattler was on the lookout for. The Bund in Shanghai which is also known as the ‘Paris of the East’ is home to architecture from the colonial periods and served just about right for Erwin Sattler.
The neo-classical style of the architecture at the Bund is a spectacle to the eye and speaks of a rich history. The century old Yifeng Mansion transformed into the Yifeng Galleria and joined hands with Erwin Sattler to take the Chinese customers into the world of clockworks with the essence of timelessness. To come to a concept, the store design was to be a flawless blend of brand architecture and incorporate the marks of time of the building which shelters it. Speaking on the concept, Agness Peng of Shanghai J & Co. Design Studio, says, “It allows the people within it to see and hear every inch steps of time, like Erwin Sattler’s own precise clockwork techniques which cleverly transform the shapeless time into a figure that represents the tracks of life, perfectly presented before our eyes through the turning of gears and axles. From the design concept, we view this boutique store as an exquisite timepiece located at the Bund, and through the turning gears in the room, continues to record the tracks of the centuries to come.” The all exposed brick building provides for an arched entrance to the store. The black entry door is branded with the name Erwin Sattler which emits a bright yellow light. The luxury definition is in the simplicity of the signage. To nurture the brand ethos in an interior space,
the material palette is inspired from the time piece itself. Erwin Sattler owes its fame to the craftsmanship which goes in the making of each piece. So, the inside story of a time piece with its construction of gears casts its spell on the interiors of the Erwin Sattler store. A high copper ceiling and carbon fibre plate on the bottom wall are drawn from this concept. Materials like copper oxide and black walnut wood are inspired from the materials which create the time piece. Use of the carbon fibre plate was an experimental attempt which rendered depth to the space with its highly reflective nature. At the entrance itself, the customer is greeted with a huge time piece very dear to the house of Erwin Sattler. Herringbone parquet flooring carpets the floor throughout. Walking the depth of the store, the wall on the right is like a tributary to the hanging clocks collection having fine artistry created through the century.
The space unfolds as a balance between functionality, brand communication and aesthetics. The divisions define the movement route and create a sense of exploration through the space. The way the products are displayed gives it a feel of an exhibition space. The creation of glass houses created pockets of interest which urge the customer to explore. As for the functionality, they helped organise the
different collections. “The two glass houses are a concept that represents the whole movement boxes of the time capsule. Inside this box the machine continues to record the tracks of time. It is for this reason that we retrofitted the components and gears of the brand itself into a visual design in the space, through the four layers of the two glass windows and the eight different depths of carving, grounding, and a
layer of digitally printed. The aim is to clearly present the perspective of the polished parts of the timepiece without obscuring it visually, and watch through the rich layers patterns of the gears on the glasses. Each precise clock passing through this cross-dimensional display also enriches the depth of field and further acts as a side view with its interlacing of dislocation and a cross between reality and another dimension for the entrances on the two sides,” says Agness
Peng. The gears’ pattern on glass boxes gives away the concept of the store design. At a metaphorical level, the store design adopts an approach drawn from the brand’s approach towards the creation of the time pieces. The flow of time and personal feel of the gears gets translated into the store design with the space flow and depiction of the gears. The approach oriented concept of the store invites customers into the store who can experience the quality standards of the brand at the store level as well
J&Co: R.L, Jada Zhang, Howard Wu, Agness Peng, Anzo Huang
Glas & Tongue