SALZBURG (AT) - Salzburg Sportalm Kitzbühel is one of Austria's best-known clothing manufacturers, with separate labels for traditional costume, ski wear and sports clothing. In 2008, Baar-Baarenfels Architekten was commissioned to develop a new corporate design for all future Sportalm retail outlets. The client wanted a design that respected their firm's tradition while also giving it a modern look. Since the clothes are colourful and cover a range of different textures, the architects decided to keep the interiors very sober and 'reduced', with an emphasis on black and white.
For the firm's new image, Baar Baarenfels came up with an abstract impression of a winter landscape. The walls – homogeneously clad with white Avonite – seem to be all of one piece thanks to the undulating forms and seamless finishing. The shelves look like waves that have broken through the otherwise uniform wall surface. This sense of movement is reinforced and a graphic contrast created by lining the undersides of the shelves and the 'peeled-back' wall sections with dark wood veneer.
The conversion of the store in Salzburg (Europark) in accordance with the new concept is the first in a series of makeovers. A freestanding wall in the middle of the Salzburg shop has rounded shapes but is just as tautly designed as the surrounding walls. The seamlessly finished cash desk is also freestanding. Apart from the deliberate allusion to a winter landscape, the interior also recalls Lucio Fontana's Concetto Spaziale series from the 1960s in which the artist cut and slashed the canvas, resulting in pictures that over forty years later inspired the architect Johannes Baar-Baarenfels when he came to make this design. (Hannah Schubert)