by Katja Laska (exclusively for EuroShop.mag)
Six teams presented their creative ideas for innovative shop window design at the Visual Merchandising Challenge 2020
C-star 2020, Shanghai’s International Trade Fair for Solutions and Trends all about Retail, came to its successful conclusion on September 4, 2020, at the Shanghai New International Expo Center. C-star is part of Messe Düsseldorf’s Euroshop trade fair portfolio and hosted the VM Challenge during the three days of the fair. Background: This marked the first time C-star and Shop! Greater China joined forces to host the VM Challenge 2020 and highlight the importance of window display. Three professional and three student teams created themed window displays live and onsite for PINKO, a contemporary Italian fashion brand. The winners can get trophies, certificates, 15 percent exhibition discount at C-star 2021 and free tickets to EuroShop 2023
Here is a vibrant look back at the creative, colorful, and unique designs of the teams, which highlighted the many facets of window displays.
ASJ Design from the UK is one of three teams made up of professionals. For many years, the interior architecture and design practice has also renovated spaces. The creation of the designers was inspired by The Birth of Venus, which prompted them to integrate many natural elements: The team recreated a summer day with colorful acrylic waves, white foam shaped like a rock, and warm spotlights reminiscent of the sun.
Candy’s International is an Italian company that specializes in visual presentations and likewise was influenced by nature. Yet the team’s concept was also inspired by a style icon: “The irresistible allure of the sixties and seventies, the timeless, irreverent, and mischievous Brigitte Bardot style, the yearning for a relaxed and carefree summer, fresh clothes, and breezy fabrics with minimal, essential lines – the perfect accompaniment for an escape to the seaside.”
The concept of LRC China also celebrates the era that embraced hippies, peace, love, and flower power and “is directly inspired by the floral patterns of the PINKO dresses and the elements that made the 60s and 70s one of the most iconic periods in modern history,” the visual merchandisers state in their application.
The competition also featured three groups of up-and-coming young talents who are dedicated to modern design trends and focused on the colors yellow, green, and blue.
Competitors included students from the Italian Istituto Marangoni, a private Italian school of fashion, founded in 1935 by fashion designer Giulio Marangoni and based in Milan. In their application, the team describes its window display design as a narrative that embodies “how our surroundings, the environment, or society, are severely polluted. Some people try to escape these developments. PINKO products give people light and the ultimate freedom to temporarily escape all the chaos and negativity.”
The Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, a school of visual arts and design, also staged PINKO products. Its concept deliberately embraced the bold and dramatic colors of the brand and combined them with glossy metallic elements, skillfully fusing order and disorder in the process. The interpretation showcases a woman in a big city. In its proposal, the group outlined that the design embodies the softness, strength, and vitality of women in elegant products and the matching ambiance.
Founded In 1960, the Shanghai Art & Design Academy, a college of art and design, said this about its concept: “Using explosive shapes and high-heeled metaphors, the woman represents the limited notion of a “pink girl” in the outside world. She wears high heels to break traditional barriers and raise her self-esteem. We wanted to maximize the image of high heels and enhance the visual impact of the window display… ”