Super M
Pewex (Poland)
Mr. Bricolage
Grand Bon Marché
E. Leclerc
Al Pelayo
Leroy Merlin
Near Oviedo (Spain), August 1999;
pict. A. Guët
Near Oviedo (Spain), August 1999;
pict. A. Guët
Siempre a su disposición
Almacenes Al Pelayo
el comercio de Asturias

Always at your service
Department store Al Pelayo

Pelayo is a boy's name.
The shops disappeared in the 1970s.

Both murals again show how a brand adapts
to the available space. Other examples are
Cognac Martell, Gentiane Suze and Dubonnet.

The artist had (or took) some freedom in the finishing: the hat became a negative, the roman type face of the statement became italic and the closing exclamation point is replaced by three dots, suggesting we must complete the sentence and thus weakening the message. It is no clear statement anymore.

I don't feel at ease with the symbolism either. I've never been in a store with assistants on duty wearing a hat. I can interpret in three ways:

1° The arm is the shop assistant. Some old custom makes them wear a hat. But they still show class, they don't raise the hat to the moon. That would scare the visitor. Only on one occasion would they act as shown on the wall: when leaving duty. See you to-morrow.
Nice message: We are just leaving!

2° It's my arm. I must give my respects to the attendant. It may be considered normal in contact with the government, but it certainly isn't in any regular shop.

3° The mural is the shop owner. It's his warm greeting: from the other side of the street and thus a bit bold. Now, that is a difficult message. The ad would have been better without the arm.

Extra observation:
The graffiti at bottom say: Mejores no hay
Philips uses the same text.

Bottom left: The shell shows the way to Santiago. The Circulo Catolico is another classic on the Camino.
Sommery (Normandy, France);
VI.1999; pict. A. Guët
Nemours (France);
V.2000; pict. M. Chartier
Rouen (France);
VI.2004; pict. Ph. Rigault
NICOLAS - fines bouteilles NICOLAS
fines bouteilles - NECTAR livreur
fines bouteilles
Nicolas is the French chain specialized in wine and liquors. They have several hunderd outlets selling good wines for reasonable prizes. The fines bouteilles alludes to the millesimes, wines of superior quality which they propose with prizes up to several thousand French Francs.

The second and third wall show a different approach with many colours and several type faces. The message doesn't change though.

Visit the Nicolas website and shop.

The second wall shows Nectar father of the Nicolas family and delivery man (livreur). Considering the number of bottles he carried in one hand, Nectar must have been very handy. Sometimes his son Glouglou was shown helping with the bottles, but that yielded protests from well meaning people. Predictable enough, the battle was against the content of the bottles (the connection of youth and alcohol) and not against child labour as such.
La Membrolle sur Choisille (France);
Cavignac (France); XII.1997 Chars (D915; Val d'Oise, France);
IV.2000; pict. M. Chartier
Centre commercial
Super M
de La Choisille
tout le vêtement masculin
Grand Bon Marché

Don't miss the fact that the shop is located on a street corner.

le(?) seul grand magasin de votre région

Disappointing website

Vigo (Spain); VII.1999 Gdansk (Poland); IX.1999;
pict. A. Anselin
Rouen (France); VI.2008;
pict. A. Birtwistle
Hombres con clase
was the name for the interior export (nice new-speak) shops where Poles could buy otherwise unobtainable goods coming from capitalist hell. Only hard currency was accepted. It was a clever communist way for getting dollars from the citizen.
was the name of a department store selling furniture.

The same wall is shown in Home appliances (pict. taken in yr 2004)

Quais de Saône (D433, France); 2000;
pict. M. Herz
Cucq (Pas-de-Calais, France); VII.2000;
pict. A. Guët
Carrefour - 35 commerces LEROY - MERLIN Detail of the O with strange creature.
Carrefour = crossroads
35 shops.

Carrefour has a website with the company's history in French and English. The developper was a bit careless in his work: both versions differ! (sept.2000) Carrefour exists since 1959.

Adolphe Leroy and his wife Rose Merlin started a company Au Stock Américain in 1923. They started reselling american left-overs from the war, but soon realised the need for material for construction and home furnishing. The business became a success because of the low prices and Leroy's invention of free delivery.
The company was renamed Leroy-Merlin in 1960.

Read more:

Laroche - St.Cydroine
(D943, Yonne, France);
X.2000; pict. M. Chartier
Laroche - St.Cydroine
(D943, Yonne, France);
X.2000; pict. M. Chartier
Mr. Bricolage E. Leclerc
Orléans (France); 7.VI.2011;
pict. L. Parmentier
Le N°1 du libre service Textiles
Vente directe aux particuliers
à prix de gros.
The N°1 in Textile selfservice.
Dealer's prices for private persons.

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