Boston's Museum of Fine Arts has opened a new Special Exhibition Shop that is designed to last a decade or more, thanks to the collaborative efforts of the architect, Bergmeyer Associates, and the fixture provider, idX Corporation.

The museum asked Bergmeyer to take the existing, 1,700-sq. ft. shop and fit it into a new 1,000-sq. ft. space. They also asked the architect to develop a design that allowed for the merchandising flexibility needed to accommodate temporary exhibits. And, by the way, they added, give us a shop that will last at least 10 years.

To create flow through the small, square footprint, Bergmeyer subtly defined a circulation area allowing visitors to move comfortably through the space.

To address the durability challenge, Bergmeyer first considered fixtures made completely from solid surface material. In value engineering the fixtures, idX recommended a combination of solid surface material and powder-coated heavy-gauge steel. Combining the two materials not only lowered the cost by 25 per cent, but resulted in more durable fixtures with lower maintenance cost.

The styling and detailing of the fixturing was kept clean and modern, like the building architecture, as a neutral backdrop for the museum's visual merchandising team.

Finally, the museum's need for flexibility was addressed through a "kit of parts" fixturing system. The system includes interchangeable fittings, movable floor fixtures, the ability to create and relocate feature wall displays, and the ability to create merchandise display "stories" by mixing components and merchandise types within the same display. To minimize trips to the stock room during operating hours, the fixtures were designed to provide back-stock storage throughout the store.

All fixtures were engineered, manufactured and supplied by idX Toronto.


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