Apr 15, 2022–Jan 15, 2023

Retail Apocalypse

1920, rue Baile, Montréal (Québec) H3H 2S6 Map
Wed–Fri 11 am–6 pm, Thu 11 am–9 pm, Sat, Sun 11 am–5 pm

Retail Apocalypse examines the entangled worlds of architecture, fashion, business, and art. The history of shopping, from the flaneur to the suburban mall to online retail, reveals how systems of technology, communication, and desire have shaped the built environment. Conversely, architectural form and urban development have also long been drivers of consumption patterns. Design has always played a role in retail culture’s evolution; it makes visible techniques of attraction and distraction, opening up spaces for critique and subversion.

This project, first developed in 2020 at ETH Zurich by gta exhibitions curators Fredi Fischli and Niels Olsen, has been reconceptualized in collaboration with the CCA. The exhibition in Montreal launches with a study of past spatial typologies through archival materials from both institutions, alongside a film program offering meditations on the death of shopping as a public activity under late capitalism. After the funeral comes a renaissance: in a second chapter, the screening room shifts into a space for reflecting on transformations in retail, presenting contemporary brands and designers that challenge industry norms.