The Mugler installation, which was designed for luxury department store Selfridges, includes sculptural, chrome-effect fragments designed to evoke a woman’s body. These were organised across the ground floor of the Corner Shop, an ever-changing retail pop-up space.
“For Mugler, we had dreamt up Bodyscape; a giant sculptural installation of a woman reclining, fragments of her body parts breaking the space up into a cluster of retail experiences,” said Random Studio.
“Amplifying the brand’s surreal fascination with the female body, the hyper-feminised curves, crevices and folds of the installation were to be accentuated by a futuristic reflective material.”
Throughout the space, sculptural fragments were used as walls, partitions and display areas that aim to take visitors on a journey through the chrome-effect-finished body. The interior walls of the shell-like fragments were painted in Mugler’s signature blue hue.
Pieces of the sculptural body, which Random Studio explained mimicked the form of a woman reclining, were displayed in full view along the street-facing windows of the Corner Shop.
“Seen from the street, the sculptural installation forms an abstract side view of a woman elegantly reclining,” said the studio.
“The curves, crevices and folds of the body are rendered in a reflective material that mirrors the viewer’s gaze, throwing back a distorted image – a nod to Mugler’s sense of humour and seduction.”
Instead of opting to use easily manufactured but less sustainable materials such as fibreglass or metal, Random Studio collaborated with Bristol-based timber company Xylotek to construct the installation using wood.
Xylotek manufactured the shell-like structures, which were painted across the exterior and interior with a metal-effect finish rather than “higly-toxic” chrome.
This was done so that the paint could eventually be stripped off and the wood recycled.
The centrepiece of the installation, encased by the chest and buttocks of the fragmented body, is a drop-shaped object that releases a cloud of fragrance and triggers starry lighting as visitors near it.
“A polyphonic soundscape of siren-esque voices coaxes visitors into the space and towards a scent sculpture, illuminated by undulating lights,” said Random Studio.
“As the visitor approaches the drop-like structure, the lights intensify and the sculpture emits a short burst of fragrance whilst a projection lights up the space with stars which slowly transforms into the abstract shapes of heavenly bodies.”
Earlier this year, Random Studio designed a series of surrealist pop-up installations at Selfridges for fashion brand Jacquemus that included a luxury-bag vending machine and a swimming-pool changing room.
Also at Selfridges, trainer brand Axel Arigato created an “upside-down” office-themed pop-up with wall-mounted trainers and polystyrene ceiling tiles across the floor.
The photography is by Jasper Fry.
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