The Ironic Loss Of The Postmodern BEST Store Facades – Design You Trust

The Ironic Loss Of The Postmodern BEST Store Facades

In the mid 1970s, the Lewis Family (the owners and operators of catalogue company BEST Products) hired Sculpture In The Environment (SITE) to create a series of facades for nine showrooms across the US. Regardless of the project’s relative financial benefits, the clients gave SITE the one thing all designers crave and fear: full creative reign.

Thus begat the BEST Products Showrooms, an incredible series of architectural commentaries on consumerism that were so in tune with material culture they can easily be simplified as the apex of American Postmodernism. Intrinsically, opinions on whether or not the stores were even “good” range wildly depending on the audience and the speaker, even now, 40 years on.

The BEST stores survived on a combination of this localised charm and a drastically reduced kind of automation for a few more years. By 1983, they had implemented automated conveyor systems and point-to-order technologies to eliminate the cost of human labor. Regardless, the end was near. BEST had withstood thirty years of highs and lows, but what it could not withstand were the unwieldy behemoths of EBay and Amazon.

More: SITE h/t: failedarchitecture

If you want more awesome content, subscribe to 'Oh, Design You Trust,' our brand new Facebook page! Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

More Inspiring Stories

Siberian People Turn Their Own Garages Into Compact Mini-Palaces
Inside the Bradbury Building, the Oldest Commercial Building in Downtown Los Angeles
Shakhti 360 Leti: Luxury Hotel in Himalayas
Architectural Camouflage Collection By Snarkitecture
Documenting America: Scenes of Early-Century New York City Life in Paintings of John French Sloan
Monstrum Playground
They Want Their Houses To Be Brighter
New York Over 35 Years Ago – 55 Color Snapshots Show The Most Populous City In The United States In 1980
Cute Chinese Cargo Van Apartment
San-Zhi - The Abandoned Pod Village in Taiwan
Breuninger Shoe Store Installation by John Breed
Wide Seats And Plenty Of Legroom: These Old Pan Am Photos Show How Much Airline Travel Has Changed
Origami Cave Puts a Stylish Spin on Emergency Shelter
Chinese Drug Maker’s Deluxe Office Building Comparable to Imperial Palace
ZFC-1: The Real Zombie Fortification Cabin
Belgian Guy Documents Ugly Houses He Sees And They’re So Bad, It’s Hilarious
Wonderful Vintage Photos Of Female Students At Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts In 1948
You’ll Never Guess What This Tiny House Looks Like On The Inside
The World's Highest Lego Tower
Incredible Street Photography In New York By Jeff Silberman
Most Awesome Wall of Air Conditioners Appears in Fuzhou, China
Summer House Designed With A Pool On Its Roof Can Be As Open Or As Closed As The Homeowner Desires
Most Expensive House in Brooklyn for Sale
Grasshopper’s Dream, A Cafe With Two Giant Grasshoppers At The Train Station In South Korea