Genius Loci: Local products, global markets – Buenos Aires

The thing that more than anything stands out in the Argentinean dimension of marketing and culture, is the evident gap that exists between the intellectual potential of a population of a city like Buenos Aires that has a bookshop on every corner, and the concrete ability to develop projects or activate “practical” energies. The splendid capability of this population to produce ideas is measured against the “concrete” and lived reality. Lived in two parallel worlds, as in a tale by Borges: the world of ideas and intentions, and the world of concrete actions, far below the expected.
Only by means of a strategic change of direction that deals with the regeneration of all things material and the Argentinean quality of life starting from it’s “physiological” base (food, restoration, materials and their use in furnishings and fashion) will it be possible to re-launch the cultural and intellectual capacity that for example filters through the reborn neighbourhood of Palermo, that in its vision is more linked to fashion trends (Soho), than to the media and show (Hollywood). The phenomena could be accompanied by the interest that the great multinationals are showing for Buenos Aires, proposing flagship stores that experiment through the use of artistic installations (as with the new Levi’s Store, that places the brand on a secondary level, and emphasises instead the creative and artistic expression of the installation), or with the recovery and restoration of the local Genius Loci, with the opening of Nike in a traditional Argentinean house, restored and regenerated in an intelligent and non invasive way. A discreet presence that experiments with new and advanced forms of respect for the identity of the neighbourhood, different to the more invasive promotional presence on the walls of the Boca area, that has not even been accepted by the people who live there.
On these themes an interesting experience developed through the workshop by CMD and Domus Academy that with Giulio Ceppi we held in a week full of stimuli, of meetings and “moves” worthy of Rayuela the book by Julio Cortazar.
28 participants from different companies and associations of great prestige (including Easy, Inti, Notorius, Repsol, Telefonica, Uba) reinterpreted with great analytic and creative skill the emerging trends in distribution, looking to what the current Buenos Aires has to offer. In this way the neighbourhood service of PalermoBus and the home delivery company Buenos Momentos, and the family restaurants Matilda and the cybercafe chain Enter, and the reading club by train Historias sobre rieles dedicated to commuters and the cultural spaces Sentido Sudaca, dedicated to emergent creativity of Latin American countries were all born.
Projects that could be realised and are in line with the Argentinean identity, innovative and supported by trends found worldwide. If Buenos Aires had the courage to restart from here, a decisive step towards a better future will be achieved.