Lojas com História, Lisboa
Historic Shops, Lisbon 
editorial  

client  Lisbon’s City Hall
FEB. 2017  OCT. 2017
supervised by Isabel Castro 
published by Edições Tinta da China
Cities are always defined by their commerce and shops. Not in the strictly binomial sense of buying and selling, but by what they make visible, make audible, the smells they produce, the sense of sharing. Even without undergoing significant changes, a shop can contribute to the identity of a city over different periods, and it remains in all periods undeniably contemporary.

(…) the Historic Shops program seeks to work on the current state of shops whose heritage has cemented their status as historic references. In other words, it questions their contemporary relevance. Given the complexity and multiplicity of possible responses, an approach was required that made it possible to use that question as a point of departure for a process of revitalization of the businesses in question.”

in Historic Shops of Lisbon,
FBAUL working team, 2017

When we started the discussion about what this book should be, we knew from the beginning it couldn’t be a mere translation of the website as a city guide, all the facts and basic information were already there so the book should be yet another way for the public to perceive, experience and understand the shops.

It is organized in two parallel narratives — thematic chapters that delve into different ideas and questions about Lisbon’s history and commerce, and each shop’s text: as the thematic text unfolds the shop’s text intrudes, in a lighter weight and smaller body arranged in two columns, forcing an interruption of the linear reading of each chapter.

Apart from this start to finish linear reading, anyone who wishes to know more about a specific shop can look it up in the alphabetical index of shops and in the maps to jump directly to it. 

There is yet a third way to experience this book, by following the hyperlinks scattered within the text, the reader has a more organic experience jumping from shop to shop, idea to idea. Here the act of reading mimics the physical exploration of the city and its history as it makes the reader stop and observe, go back, revisit, discover.