Luxury fashion houses’ flirtation with everything ‘street’ continues apace with a new Fendi pop-up café at Harrods. The Italian powerhouse has commissioned LA-based street artist Joshua Vides to create an ‘exclusive emporium experience’ that comprises a made-to-order Peekaboo Bar on the ground floor and the Fendi Caffe on the fifth floor of the Knightsbridge store.
Vides has risen to fame via Instagram in under two years, winning followers with his graffiti-like ‘Reality to Idea’ aesthetic which involves altering objets and even buildings by painting over them in his simple black-and-white comic book-like graphics. It’s an illustrative style reminiscent of British artists muralist Charlotte Mann and ceramicist Katharine Morling, but Vides pieces have segued from street art to larger installations and streetwear.
It was his transformation of an Air Force 1 sneaker that went viral and became his calling card for major brands from Mercedes Benz (for whom he’s created the Lave-Auto Laurier car wash in Montreal) to Google. Now he brings his monochrome brushstrokes to London for Fendi in the form of these two spaces. Peekaboo Bar, the concept store on the ground floor, allows customers to customise their own MiniPeekaboo by mixing and matching three key elements – the body, handle and strap – from a huge variety of options.
Meanwhile, up on the fifth floor of Harrods the Fendi Caffe ‘offers a taste of Italy’ in hand-painted cartoon-like surroundings, which are a bit like stepping into a luxury version of Aha’s Take on Me video. Vides has reimagined Fendi’s double FF logo which appears on walls, tables, menus, plates and crockery, not to mention on cakes and as latte art on coffees.
So which will prove to be the fashionistas’ Instagram hit this summer – the Fendi Caffe or Prada’s pretty Mayfair patisserie, the recently opened Wes Anderson-like Marchesi 1824? Only time will tell.
Peekaboo Bar is open until 28th July and the Fendi Caffe until 31st August, harrods.com
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