Figure it out
Mairi Beautyman -- Interior Design, 4/1/2003 12:00:00 AM
At Co-Op, a fashion-savvy Manhattan offshoot of Barneys New York, Marc Jacobs dresses and Juicy Couture separates are offered in a space that's as body-conscious—so to speak—as the clothing. In designing the 7,000-square-foot store, the Barneys in-house team fixated on a retail standard: the mannequin. The molded-fiberglass figures show up in entirely unconventional ways, from the ceiling-mounted cerulean versions rotating in midair above the poured-concrete staircase to the pair of crossed legs flinging their slinky high heels over the curved plaster enclosure of a fitting room. Even signage, commissioned from artist Malcolm Hill, spells out co-op in a jumble of interlaced dummy limbs. "Although we're a serious store, our sense of humor is slightly left of center," explains David New, executive vice president of creative services.
The quirky blend of function and flourish extends to display fixtures. Weathered farm tables found at a flea market and shelving made from salvaged mahogany commingle with stainless-steel custom racks inspired by hospital screens. The heterogeneous mix lends Co-Op the feel of an art studio, one where mannequins stand in for artist's models.