Located in Sydney, Australia, EyeOpener was designed by Christopher Polly Architect. The new flagship store responds to the established high-end retail character of the street and the projected retail character of the future Westfield development opposite by providing a high quality spatial experience for the presentation of optical products that overcomes its spatial limitations and belies its modest budget.
A series of white opal resin display shelves and illuminated light-box storage units float and curve around the interior of the existing glass store front – all supported by white painted structural columns, each with integrated concealed lighting for maximum visual focus of the opticals displayed along the store front. Other modules wrap around the interior walls of the existing shell, accommodating other programmatic requirements for the display of sunglasses & optical products and for provision of storage.
The design response involved a restrained monochromatic palette of materials and finishes – black rubber flooring, framed full height mirrors, white painted columns, white opal resin shelves and white polyurethane finishes. A multicoloured striped wall deviates from this palette, marking the location of the testing room beyond, while providing visual interest to the rear of the store, especially when viewed from the street. It draws an abstract analogy with the visible or optical spectrum that is refracted when light passes through an optical prism, providing a nod to the clinical nature of the function being housed within. A black painted wall towards the rear provides some visual depth to the small footprint, while enabling a striking reading of the back-lit white opal signage and the white framed display & storage modules under.