The Foldaway Bookshop by Campaign for LFA
Campaign is a young and dynamic East-London based design workshop with an impressive portfolio. Their projects already include commissions for Burberry, as well as work with temporary structures and the retail sector, such as a pop-up store for Dr. Martens in Spitalfields Market and a temporary installation for Dunhill during New York Fashion Week earlier this year. Their Foldaway Bookshop project for this summer’s LFA began as an initiative by Claire Curtice publicists and its aim was to engage London’s architects. Designed in three weeks and constructed within three days from 58 sheets of cardboard, Foldaway was managed and stocked by RIBA Bookshops.
Why a bookshop?
The idea for a bookshop came about through a desire to celebrate the art of the printed publication and create a key destination and sociable space central to the festival programme.
What was your main design idea for the project? How did the concept evolve?
We wanted to challenge the idea of a recyclable shop, so we used cardboard. From the ceiling to the walls, which are concertinaed to create shelves for the books, the entire structure is cardboard. It was inspired by the open pages of a book. With its giant paperclips and post-it notes, visiting it feels literally like being inside a giant book.
What led you to the choice of cardboard as the main material?
The design of retail spaces will become increasingly eco-aware. Thinking environmentally is one of the next big issues for retail.
You have worked in the past on quite a few temporary structure commissions. What attracts you to such a commission?
Temporary/ pop-up is taking retail interiors to another level; it allows us to create increasingly experimental environments that can challenge subjects in a lucid and immersive way.
What is the temporary structure’s biggest advantage?
In the broad concept of a pop-up store installation, impermanent structures develop a brand’s sense of presence and experience. They can be used to engage new consumers, remind old ones of a brand’s creativity and offer retailers a chance to extend their presence or reach within a market while keeping financial risk to a minimum.
... and what are its main challenges?
To achieve memorable impact with a small budget and limited time scale.
Which is your favourite LFA temporary installation?
Our favourite is Carmody Groarke’s temporary restaurant for Bistrotheque on top of the Westfield shopping centre in Stratford, using materials borrowed from the mega-mall’s construction site.
Are there thoughts of reviving the Foldaway Bookshop in other locations, after the festival?
We’ve had great feedback and ideas for Foldaway Bookshop to pop-up in some interesting and unlikely venues - watch this space!