Standart.Space - The Art of Increasing It | Grailify
Standart.Space - The Art of Increasing It

Standart.Space - The Art of Increasing It

German footballer Lukas Podolski is what you would call a true hometown hero. Born in Poland, he moved with his family to the Cologne area at the age of two. Here he became one of the top performers - and one of the most popular figures - of 1. FC Köln. His ties to the city remain strong even after the striker's subsequent moves to other clubs. With several local businesses ranging from ice cream, kebap and burger shops to his "Straßenkicker" label, Lukas remains rooted in the community. His current involvement with Japanese team Vissel Kobe has now given birth to another project that gives Cologne its own streetwear concept space.
A meeting of modern culture and historic architecture

The driving creative force behind this new location called "Standart.Space" is none other than Andy Chiu. The self-proclaimed "Germazian" has already pulled the strings for sportswear giant adidas in Japan as director of Originals and Action Sports. With Standart, he is now helping to build a completely new project from scratch. The shop's location, however, is another with history. The premises of the former skate shop "Made In" are the perfect place for the duo's shared vision. An established location in the heart of Cologne suits Lukas' commitment to the city. And the bright and open space proves to be a suitable canvas for Andy's idea of a modern concept space.
The entrance area of the store

In August 2019, Standart opened its doors to the public. Finally, people from Cologne and the region were able to take a look at the store and its illustrious inventory. Right in the entrance area, a coffee bar invites you to linger and creates a unique atmosphere. Real plants provide a natural flair in the clean aesthetics of the shop. Flashing brick walls hint at the shop's rustic history. Across from the checkout, in a small wooden hut, is a sneaker wall with the latest releases from brands like adidas, PUMA, VANS, Sonra and others. Above this is a selection of bearbricks that already hint at what's waiting for you in the back of the place.
There's nothing like...
... a freshly brewed cup of coffee
Art and street culture magazines provide the appropriate reading material, while a selection of coveted streetwear can be found in the back. Alongside essentials like Stüssy and Daily Paper, hard-to-find Japanese brands from Wacko Maria to Human Made round out the selection. But of course, the portfolio is far from complete so soon after opening. Soon, labels like ACRONYM, Visvim, Neighborhood, WTAPS and sacai will complete the range.

The involvement of Lukas Podolski is something very special. How did you get to know each other?
Well, we both had two common aspects in our lives: We lived in Japan and we had a very close relationship with adidas.

What is the connection with Lukas and how did you find out that you were on the same wavelength?
We became close friends pretty quickly. We have the same perspective on many things in life and a similar sense of humour in many ways, I think.
Lukas Podolski and Andy Chiu in the Standart.Space
What is special about Standart.Space compared to other shops?
With Standart we offer a space with good vibes, energy and curated products that not everyone has in their portfolio. It might sound bizarre at first, but our goal is not necessarily to motivate people to buy more, but to buy the right product with the right energy, in the right place and for the right purpose.

You mentioned that there is a disconnect between generations. How do you want to change that and can you explain that?
First of all - it may not apply to everyone, but our observation is that kids today don't necessarily have background information on or care about what they like or want. The flow of information has become so fast that everything seems to be more and more standardised. We can see this all over the world in every genre - so it's getting harder and harder to find unique experiences, styles, energies or products. When people suddenly like and follow artwork from FUTURA because Mr Abloh has integrated it into his show, it's very interesting to see. We don't necessarily want to change that, but to convey certain qualities and values that we believe in, such as service, knowledge, culture, background and soon some more initiatives.

The Sneaker Wall - and Bearbrick Figures in a Row

What is your connection to art?
I have a long background in art and have even studied art. Art can be applied to many things in our lives and seems to become more and more important as everything just seems to come and go.

Can you explain the space? Can you take us on a tour?
The space starts with a chill-out room where you can have a coffee and look at a mural. It's currently by Kevin Lyons and will be changed at regular intervals. We wanted to make sure that people could first familiarise themselves with the whole space and energy and not be confronted with countless shelves. This is followed by our café area where you can get snacks, drinks and accessories. The curated products then start in the third and fourth areas. We have tried to give the products their due space and not fill up every shelf or rack with products. We really believe in less is more.
The monster mural by artist Kevin Lyons
What brands do you have in stock? What is special about the Standart portfolio?
We have a pretty unique selection of brands and products, but also evergreen products. At the end of the day, I think it's the person that makes the product special, and not necessarily the product, but the person wearing it. We've all seen a person wearing expensive clothes and shoes and looking like a fool. So the person at the end is the white screen in our POV.
Food for thought...

... and streetwear at its best

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