MSD has formally aligned itself with fashion label ALPHA60 as Education Partner, with collaborations to enrich the teaching and learning activities for both MSD students and the general public. Over a two year period starting in 2020, the partnership encompasses the development of learning opportunities through studio and elective subjects, and public-facing exhibitions featuring the outputs of the collaboration.
Through a range of learning opportunities the collaboration will explore the future of what a fashion ‘store’ can be. A public space in and of the city, the contemporary fashion store is no longer an environment strictly for consuming material, it is a scene of cultural storage and exchange. Utilising experimental digital technology, inventive material, and innovative display methods the collaboration will strategise on the role of the contemporary fashion store, its impact on the city, and how design and architecture can enhance experiences of cultural exchange.
What if customers were no longer identified as consumers, but recognized as researchers, students, patients, museum-goers? What if the shopping experience were not one of impoverishment, but of enrichment? Rem Koolhaas - On Prada New York
The collaboration will critique and expand the idea of what it means to ‘store’ cultural material - garments, jewellery, literature, art, data, ideas, experiences. The store will be explored as a space not only for supply, but for the spatial storage and display of real and virtual material, engaging the public, mediating the city.
Over multiple semesters students who participate in the collaboration will be able to work with Georgie and Alex Cleary, Alpha60 Creative Directors, to develop a range of ideas that will be exhibited through a variety of physical and virtual mediums and may even become integrated into the Alpha60 stores, collections and online content.
In semester 1, 2020, these ideas will start to be explored through two masters subjects, a design studio “STORE”, and an elective “Siii Lab - 3d Scanning & Virtual Reality. These two subjects are designed to complement each other with content and materials produced being used and shared across both subjects. Students interested in being part of the collaboration are encouraged to enroll in both, however can also enroll in either as a standalone subject.
Siii Lab introduces students to critical views on 3D scanning and virtual reality technology by digitally reproducing and representing spatial environments. Siii Lab focuses on the relationship between image making technologies; 3D scanning, photography, film, real-time render engines - and architectural representation. ALPHA60 will provide the architectural spaces, objects, situations and events that students will scan, analyse and represent during the elective.
STORE Design Studio
This design studio will be the key element that conceptually explores and develops design outcomes responding to the idea of what it means to ‘Store’ cultural material - garments, jewellery, literature, art, data, ideas, experiences. The design work produced in the first semester will be further developed in subsequent semesters formalising the conceptual ideas into built projects.
This webpage will become the digital storage location for outcomes produced during the collaboration. Check back regularly for updates and insights into where the ideas are leading.
STORE Studio: Semester 2
Rose Po Qee Ong
Alpha 60 Theatre
Alpha 60 Is People
A Lab Within a Store
Store as a Second Skin
A House in a Landscape
STORE Studio: Semester 1
The STORE Studio is the key method of speculative design exploration as part of the broader STORE Project, a collaborative partnership between Alpha60 and the Melbourne School of Design, that interrogates the future of what a fashion ‘store’ can be. Through the lens of seeing the contemporary fashion store as no longer being an environment strictly for consuming material, but being a scene for cultural storage and exchange, the STORE Studio is speculating on the role of the contemporary fashion store and how technology will enhance and evolve our retail, brand and cultural experiences.
Through the semester students have explored physical and virtual storage devices, drawing upon historical and contemporary references, overlaid with the possibilities new technologies provide to the cultural experience of shopping. Students have experimented with key technologies, such as 3D Lidar scanning, virtual and augmented reality and digital presentation and visualisations tools through workshops and demonstrations. The final projects for the semester combine this design research, applying it to the inner city Alpha60 shop, and cultural hub, Chapter House on Flinders Lane, within a Joseph Reed designed gothic icon of Melbourne.
In the post pandemic world the focus of the studio and the key role digital and virtual technology will play in shaping this future feels even more relevant and innovative than when the collaboration was initially proposed, addressing critical contemporary issues of design, architecture and technology. The students final projects speculate on ideas such as the physical store no longer being a place for shopping instead being a place for data collection to enhance the online shopping experience, the possibilities of creating autonomous mobile store pods to come to customers and events, or the potential of digital technologies to enhance the experience of personalisation.
The work produced by STORE Studio students is presented through a three dimensional virtual studio space At.Studio. Click on the project tiles above to explore the projects.
Siii Labs: Semester 2
Siii Labs: Semester 1
The unique offering of the design studio (Studio 35 STORE) and elective teaching (Siii Lab) allows students to further develop critical skills and knowledge in advanced digital technologies such as 3D scanning and VR/AR, as well as develop substantial and considered design projects. The elective operates as an open subject, and welcomes students from outside of the design studio to engage, learn and develop skills in various digital tools.
Siii Lab introduces students to critical views on 3D scanning and virtual reality technology by digitally reproducing and representing spatial environments. Siii Lab focuses on the relationship between image making technologies; 3D scanning, photography, film, real-time render engines - and architectural representation. ALPHA60 has provided the architectural spaces, objects, situations and events that students have scanned, analysed and represented during the elective.
We hope you enjoy browsing the work on our ‘virtual exhibition wall’. Please zoom in close to the work in order for the images to update and become clear. You can click on the play buttons to interact with 3D models and videos produced by the students.