Ssense’s David Chipperfield-Designed Montreal Store Is Stone-Cold Cool

Montreal’s newest architectural landmark is out to rival Habitat 67 as the city’s best brutalist design. For his first Canadian project — the flagship of online retailer Ssense — famed British architect David Chipperfield went all-in on concrete.


Behind a 19th-century façade is a series of spaces that fall somewhere between sleek dungeon and stark palace, including a café, change rooms to book for trying on a selection of Ssense’s online offerings, and showrooms that double as galleries for ongoing art programming.


During the launch party performance, for instance, electronic music artist Arca broke out of a cage, made love to lasers, then climbed to the top of a pile of e-waste. As far as we know, you’d never see that at Habitat.