A 'SHOE STORE WITHOUT SHOES' SELLS AN EXPERIENCE
One of Camper's retail stores in SOHO, at the corner of Prince and Greene Streets, creates an open environment without the typical retail look. At first glance from the entrance of the retail store, we see 'Camper' plastered across the entirety of the wall, until you walk into the space and soon discover an expansive shelving of shoes built to only be seen from the opposite angle.
Designed by Japanese architect, Shigeru Ban, this retail store touts its open-space environment along with its roof made of Ban’s signature paper tubing. The retail store has been dubbed the ‘House of Shoes’ due to its inviting space and Japanese paper-sensation found along the seats in the middle of the space and the paper tubing on the roof. What’s interesting, is that the design of this space places ‘people’ at the center of the experience, rather than the products themselves. It’s about having people become the focus, and the shoes tending to the needs of each individual.
The only downside to the wall structure is its deceiving nature. From afar, the shoe store doesn't look like it's got shoes to sell! The products are not featured! Customers have stepped in a few steps only to turn away from what looks to be a large open space without any sign of retail. This is a prime example of the push and pull between art and commerce.