COS, with its modernist and architectural approach to fashion, takes art and design seriously. The H&M brand has collaborated with Serpentine Galleries, Frieze art fairs and the Donald Judd Foundation, and has participated for five years in the Salone del Mobile, in Milan.
An installation bowing at the Salone Tuesday, by Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto, was inspired by the COS spring 2016 collection. Called “Forest of Light,” the Fujimoto piece is located in Cinema Art, a derelict theater in Milan’s San Babila district. The expansive space was built in the Thirties by Italian architect Mario Cereghini.
COS said it has been inspired by Fujimoto’s work for years. The architect often focuses on negative space and the concept of bringing the outside inside. Some of Fujimoto’s best-known architectural projects, such as the 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion, blur the parameters of space, with edges dissolving into their surrounding environment.
“Forest of Light” investigates the ideas of interaction and perspective. Towering cones illuminate the darkened space and respond to visitors’ movements. The atmosphere is further manipulated with custom sounds, subtle fog and mirrored walls, which create an infinite landscape where the cone spotlights become abstracted trees in a forest of light.
“Sou Fujimoto has really grasped the COS aesthetic, creating an installation that is so special in its simplicity and surprising in its approach,” said Martin Andersson, head of menswear design at COS. Karin Gustafsson, his counterpart for women’s design, added, “It has been great working with Sou Fujimoto on this project. We have never had such a beautifully simple installation—focusing on light and the effect is incredible.”