The client, a highly profiled sommelier and wine merchant, had to move locations and came to us with a request for a ‘different’ wine-store with a strong design which reflects the modern and fresh spirit of a new generation of wine makers. The predominant requirement was to place six or twelve bottles of about 1200 different types of wine (about 12000 bottles altogether) and a small tasting-bar on an area of about 70m², spread over two levels and with no space for storage. From the outset it was clear that this was not manageable with traditional wooden shelving, crates or boxes. The use of space has been optimized for the benefit of the product - the shelf disappeared and storage became shop.
This shop should consist just of wine and no furniture – similar to a spreadsheet, which is full of data without wasting any space on structure. An important aspect was the exact positioning and organisation of the various types of bottles in the shelf. A vertical sort sequence was developed, derived from the columns in a spreadsheet. Each element can carry 25 bottles, with the carries attached five cartons of wine can be stored in each of them. The usual romantic and idealised aesthetic of wine culture –oak furniture, earthy hues– was reinterpreted according to the cool self-conception of many young winemakers which is also reflected in many of the new labels on bottles. It quickly became clear, that the manually crafted installation we first had in mind had to be replaced with a industrially produced serial product to match the required standards of precision, function and aesthetics. 386 fourpointeight were installed in a range of 21 colours: to soften the hard-edged industrial product, to give it some lightness and warmth, to create a sense of orientation and eventually to provide the location with some attention to the public.
These elements thus serve as a storage area, the visually appealing presentation of wine happens via a metal carrier, which lets the individual bottle float in front of the grid. To stage the installation the surrounding walls were rendered with black lime plaster, backlights were installed to add depth and the resin floor was made bright to let the light appear from below. A small tasting bar was installed in a display window. Customers can sit on a bench in the window and enjoy a glass of wine and some regional ‘tapas’.
The shelving element – fourpointeight – Steel wire 4,8 mm, powder-coated:
4 prefabricated wire-grid mats, welded in two levels, are connected upright with 5 reclined wire-fans to create a spatial wire structure with the dimensions 520mm (w) x 520mm (h) x 350mm (d). The wire mats act as statically effective layers – the 5 wire-fans connect them to each other. These fans are equipped with runners, which enable the shelf to accommodate 98% of all established bottle formats elegantly. One of these elements can carry 25 bottles of wine. A circumferential wire with bend edges adds style and lightness. The powder coating provides protection (the shelf from corrosion, the bottles from damage) and colour, but also dampens against vibration and clanging. The robot-welded steel wire piece fourpointeight was developed up to serial production in cooperation with our manufacturer.
They are added modularly to each other with a connector consisting of two metal semi-shells, which are bolted together. fourpointeight can be endlessly added to each other in pixel logic, gaps and cantilevers are possible. Spatial structures can be built up to a height of six elements (statically certified). The carriers for the individual bottles are made of bent sheet metal, which are suspended from the grid and secured against inadvertent dislocation with an O-ring.