An interesting store with big ambitions emerged in Seoul’s happening retail scene. Called 1984, the store has its roots in publishing and its name is obviously derived from George Orwell’s ominous yet iconic novel. But more than being just named after the book, 1984 actually takes a stand against cultural totalitarianism and aims to go beyond the usual restraints of retail to also serve as a communication platform for various cultural discplines such as art, fashion and music.
Located in a modern structure smack in the middle of Hongdae, an area known nationwide and beyond for its strong indie vibe, the store’s decorum leans heavily on the concrete shell it occupies. The exposed concrete is matched with compatible interventions of D.I.Y. chic, resulting in a balanced look. Clever lighting does the rest. The store is divided into three spaces: first and foremost there’s the retail area, brimming with a tightly-edited selection of apparel, accessories, shoes, books, magazines and other lifestyle products.
1984’s brand list features a cool mix of Korean and international brands, and currently includes Fitbow, Aesop, Chokonte, Calepino and Thisisneverthat. A gallery space stages a monthly program of exhibitions and other events, and last but not least a café where to relax, work or meet friends.