Selfridges (far view)
Birmingham, Britain 2003
When the British department store commissioned London architectural firm Future Systems to design a new building, the retail executives asked the architects to create a flagship that would snare the attention of consumers within a 25 mile radius. As if this goal were not enough, an added challenge was to enforce the store's brand without the aid of an identifying sign. In fact, shoppers won't find any Selfridges signage on the store's exterior. More than 15,000 aluminum circles placed on the building's curvy exterior creates a glimmering fish-scale effect.