Dress, by Future Systems

For the city of Birmingham in the United Kingdom the British architect Future Systems designed this new Selfridges department store. The blob-skin of the building is clad in silver discs. According to the architects the facade refers to the dresses with metal discs of designer Paco Rabanne of the sixties, but also to the stonework on the facade of the 16th century Gesu Nuovo in the city of Naples, Italy.

If iconography concerns both form and cladding, I would argue that the Selfridges store puts all its emphasis on the cladding and has an underdeveloped form. Its form could have looked like something, like something beautiful…

Future Systems - Selfridges, Birmingham 1 

Future Systems - Selfridges, Birmingham 2 

Paco Rabanne - Sixties' dress with metal discs

Gesu Nuovo, Naples, Italy


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