It’s beginning to look a lot like the Haas-idays, at least at Barneys locations across the country. Today we’re thrilled to unveil Haas for the Holidays, our latest holiday window collaboration, created in conjunction with artist duo The Haas Brothers. Twins Nikolai and Simon Haas have taken the sense of joy and whimsy that art enthusiasts are used to seeing in the twosome’s sculptural and graphic work, channeled it into a message of positivity and inclusivity, and applied it to Barneys windows and store interiors at locations from coast to coast. In celebration of the project, they’ve also rolled out an exclusive collection of holiday gifts to help you bring the joy home. Above, take a peek at the whole project and the process of its creation in our exclusive making-of-the-windows video, then scroll on for a closer look at New York’s Madison Avenue and Downtown window displays. Be sure to check back here for updates on how Haas for the Holidays is rolling out to L.A., as well as to see how you can get involved as part of our #HaasRules social campaign.
The Madison Avenue windows trace a course through time, depicted an imagined evolution from a time before mankind to a post-human distant future. The first window, “Primordial,” looks at the beginnings of life on our planet and incorporates some of the Haas’ marble sculptures and creature-like light fixtures.
Up next, the second window transports us into the Haas Brothers’ imagined world of “Utopia,” a period of peace, bounty, and even decadence. Set among sculptures from the duo’s Baobab and Socatra series, we’re introduced to one of the windows’ central characters, a multi-colored-striped zebra named Rainbow Baggins who represents diversity and acceptance, as well as his friend Rhinona Wyder. As with all of the windows, the scene comes to life thanks to an ever-changing digital backdrop illustrated by artist Elliot Blanchard and made possible by digital technology from Christie.
In the third Madison Avenue window, entitled “Millennium,” we come close to our present day, but with the Haas’ creations standing in for humans. Their furry creatures interact with digital screens in a forest setting strewn with glittering poppies. The central message of the window is that, even as fear and greed seep into the world, we can choose to embrace love and compassion, fueling hope for a change. The fate of the world lies in our hands, and it’s up to each of us to decide what kind of future we’ll create. Or as the #HaasRules sum it up, “The future is your present.”
Rounding out the Madison flagship lineup is the fourth window, a vision of a distant, post-human future call “Mushroom Singularity.” Plants and animals—or maybe computers?—have taken over control of our planet and all coexist harmoniously. Aliens flit across the digital background while glitter-encrusted mountains and mushrooms dominate the scene. This world is populated by Haas pieces from their Afreaks series, each of which has been hand-beaded by a group of women in South African townships.
Shifting to Barneys’ Downtown Flagship, both the store windows and the iconic central spiral staircase embrace the theme “Snake Love, Not War.” A playful snake, dubbed Rowdy Roddy Viper, winds through a serene landscape, spreading his peaceful vibes to another of the beaded Afreaks sculptures. The bright colors and characters like the playful clouds are seen downtown in addition to the appearances they make up on Madison Avenue.
The snaky vibes continue inside the store, where our staircase has been wrapped in a vibrant snakeskin print. Winding through all four floors of the store, the playful element continues with a pile of the Haas’ snake-like sculptures at the bottom of the spiral.
Haas for the Holidays is on view at Barneys locations across the country now through January 1st. Stop by any of our stores to experience it for yourself, and to learn more about how you can get involved, please check out #HaasRules.