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Selfridges Partners With Berlin’s Reference Festival on In-Store Exhibition

An image of a futuristic rendering of a hand to illustrate the Selfridges Superfutures Exhibition.
Selfridges is partnering with Berlin’s Reference Festival on a new in-store exhibition. (Superfutures Exhibition)

Dubbed ‘Superfutures,’ the exhibit will consist of installations peppered throughout the famed London department store, designed to provide a window into the future and imagine what the world would look like if it continues on its current trajectory.

Curated by Agnes Gryczkowska, the exhibit will feature works from creatives including Estonian artist Katja Novitskova and Kuwaiti visual artist Monira Al Qadiri. It will run from Jul. 14 to Oct. 16, and will also be available to view digitally online.

”We aim to challenge our own mindsets, along with those of our customers, thinking deeply about what sort of future we might want, and the steps we need to take today in order to live a brighter tomorrow,” Selfridges’ acting creative director Emma Kidd said in a statement.

The partnership is the latest example of Selfridges’ big bet on experiential retail — a strategy that resonated well with shoppers and led to revenues doubling to $1.2 billion in 10 years before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. Earlier this year, Thai retail conglomerate Central Group and Austrian property group Signa acquired Selfridges for a reported $5.4 billion price tag, making it one of the UK’s biggest retail deals in years.

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Reference Festival is a Berlin-based event that launched in 2019 with a 24-hour festival combining a mix of fashion, art and music performances and installations.

Learn more:

Can Selfridges Future-Proof the Department Store? Download the Case Study

Selfridges has attracted a bid from a potential buyer at a $5.7 billion valuation, the latest indication that the department store’s big bet on physical retail is paying off. But after a bruising pandemic year, the British chain could struggle to rebound amid a continued collapse in international tourism and a shift to online sales.

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