Like moths to a flame Vinçon’s warm glow of red neon has been drawing shoppers since the late 1960’s.
Offering products from the classic to the quirky, Vinçon sits in a privileged position on Passeig de Gracia. A contemporary home design store and Barcelona institution of chic. Oozing cool in an age of internet shopping and Amazon deliveries. Vinçon remains box fresh.
Based in the former home and studio of Catalan artist Ramon Casas, it’s architectural structures and form create the perfect frame to highlight the products and furnishings, and a terrace overlooking La Pedrera forms the perfect backdrop.
Formerly a porcelain imports firm founded in 1934. Fernando Amat, architect, interior designer and co-owner, re-vitalised the store in the late 60’s. Amat, the second generation owner, turned the retail concept on it’s head, taking inspiration from Terence Conran’s London store. Instilling a philosophy in which the products themselves were the exhibits, and the store a relaxed public space to view and enjoy.
Visual Merchandising Minimalism
The concept has been described as ‘visual merchandising minimalism’, a simple technique but hard to implement. The ‘Less is More’ approach can have a tendency to fall flat especially in large open plan areas. Of course it helps if the product you display are visually imposing and playful in context. Such as over-sized plastic legs of Jamon, mix these with established design classics and a juxtaposition of visual aesthetics is created.
Keeping with Catalan tradition, the window display is a constant focal point. Portraying and promoting emerging Catalan talent with it’s innovate fresh design approach. An extended entrance of glass and imagery, beginning at street level and crossing deep into the store, bridge the modern world of retail design and traditional Catalan architecture.
The window display takes the place of the entrance where horses and carriages traditionally used to cross the boundaries of these aristocratic homes. Two ages meeting and complementing the marketing mix.
La Sala Vinçon
Supporting fine art, graphic & industrial design has always been entwined and synonymous with the Vinçon philosophy. The Amat brothers resurrected the historical ‘La Sala Vincon’ in 1972. An exhibition space and proverbial ‘White Cube’, acting as a blank canvas to portray art and design.
The non-profit space has been the starting point in the careers of some notable Spanish and Catalan artists, such as Javier Mariscal.
The Vinçon Revolution
To appreciate the philosophy fully, Vinçon needs to be contexualised. Imagine Barcelona in the late 1960’s, a city under the oppression of dictatorship where shopping usually consisted of starched uniformed attendants and locked glass cabinets.
Vinçon broke down the boundaries and barriers between the customer and the product. Simplifying the retail process to a purer form – a revolutionary approach to a new retail evolution.
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