closed curcuit
15 March, 2009, 6:46 pm
Filed under: Advertising, Architecture, Culture

photo by Brian Ulrich

photo by Brian Ulrich

Speaking of signage again, it’s sometimes difficult to appreciate the loss of a particular store in stripmall america. Like a plate on an office door, one name is replaced by another and life moves on for the rest of the world. I had that feeling with one very notable exception as I was viewing the photo essay, Dark Stores at Time.com. For all the hollowed out sales floors and ghost-logoed store fronts, Circuit City was like a funerial monument amidst ordinary grave markers. Its store architecture is so iconic to the brand I could have been able to recognise it even without the hiroshima shadow logo.

Is it unhealthy to let something slip away and to act like it never was? Maybe it is just inefficient to build something so recognizable in a world of here-today-gone-tomorrow. But I think there is something more worthwhile to be taken away here than successful architectural branding. How successful was that branding ultimately? Remembrances like these are what let us learn from history rather than slap on a fresh coat of paint and march on. Circuit City is not so easily erased. Unless these buildings are raised and rebuilt, there will remain that echo of a dead brand, passed warranty. Someone is going to have to go that extra step and pull the architectural plugs across the country, and were going to see the loss.


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