La Maison Champs-Elysées consists of two buildings, one dating from the Second Empire under Napoleon III, the other built more recently. Maison Martin Margiela, appointed after winning the competition to design the historical part of the building, has re-thought this space to create hotel suites, a restaurant, a smoking room, a bar and a reception area. In designing this project Maison Martin Margiela aimed for continuity in relation to its own artistic history by offering a place where contrasts harmonize that are further tinged with surrealism.
Portuguese practice A2G Arquitectura has created Sushihana, a sushi restaurant in Porto. Inviting and minimal, the space seeks to communicate a contemporary architectural language while retaining a unique aesthetic. Materialized through milky-white wood and perforated back-lit panels, the design seeks to reveal itself discreetly, drawing curious passerby’s into the warm interior. The main dining room is contained within an inner volume that generates a more intimate and controlled environment. Surrounded by louvered panels and defined by a dropped ceiling, the semi-enclosed eating area is treated in contrast to the rest of the space and divides the restaurant into two distinct zones: sit down and take-away. An abstract Japanese motif wraps around the walls and ceiling, its perforated skin acting as the primary source of artificial light.
Photographer Philip Sinden has completed a series of environmental portraits and images of the home of legendary industrial designer, Dieter Rams.
“Dieter Rams may have just celebrated his 79th birthday but he is still as passionate as ever about design and architecture as he was when starting out at German manufacturer Braun back in 1955 at the age of 23. Sitting in his house, designed by himself, on the outskirts of Frankfurt he reflects on his career and with no children of his own he hopes to help other, young designers take his principles of design and create products that enhance our lives and add to the ever-changing story of good, simple, honest design. Having designed his own home, from the bespoke white tiles with dark grey grouting, made for the Vitsœ showroom in Frankfurt at the same time to match perfectly to the dimensions of his 50-year-old shelving system to fixtures for his tools in the downstairs workshop‚ a room that saw many secret product development when it was even too secretive to be worked on at the Braun factory, Rams is a perfectionist to a degree that most of us would not even comprehend. Only a few items have made it in to his home that have not been under the microscopic view of his eye before heading to mass-production.”
- Daniel Nelson
The office design is based on the spirit of Skype, how it is a useful and playful tool that connects the world. The in-between shapes of interconnected nodes has given us romboid and triangular shapes that is visible in the flooring and in the design of some of the hard furniture. The playful happy theme in colours and soft furniture comes from the Skype graphics and the Skype cloud logo is reinterpreted as cloud-shaped lighting throughout the office space. The Stockholm office predominately works with audio- and video development and this is manifested in the special made wallpapers with cables, earphones and other devices linked to audio-video technique.
Los Angeles-based architect, Bruce Bolander, has completed the architectural and design work on the Chicago office of international editorial company The Whitehouse, his third of such projects for the company. Previous projects included the Los Angeles and New York offices of The Whitehouse.
The project hinged on the transformation of the space. The Whitehouse had occupied a set of offices in the historic Courthouse Place building since 1995. Courthouse Place was designed by architect Otto H. Matz and completed in 1893. It was initially known as the Cook County Criminal Court Building and was the site of many legendary trials during the 1920′s.
Even though they appreciated the character of the building and the space with its dark wood from a previous design and historical feeling – especially with their British background – the company was moving in a new and vibrant direction and they wanted their space to reflect their modern outlook.
Light was important to the client, as the current space was very dark. “I focused the design so that the light from the outside came all the way through, which was occasionally as simple as changing the blinds, wall and floor color. In other areas, we cut out some of the perimeter offices to let light in along the large corridors,” said Bolander. “The intention was to try to peel back and get back to the basics of the building, so we uncovered the brick and steel pieces. We also as integrated other stripped-down elements such as vertical wood-paneling as an an additional material that kind of bridges the old and the new.”
The Whitehouse, Chicago by Bruce Bolander
Located at the top of Nichols Canyon on a quiet cul-de-sac, the home has been strikingly modernized yet remains faithful to the confident, unfussy simplicity of Fickett’s original aesthetic. It is sited on a handsomely landscaped knoll above the street, flanked by the original carport. Through the double entry doors one is struck immediately by the open living plan and dramatic glass atrium and pond that anchors the center of the home, bringing the peaceful sound of water flowing over rocks indoors and filtering light throughout. Cool white limestone floors play against the heft of the double-sided river rock fireplace and the geometry of a cinder block feature wall. Floor to ceiling Fleetwood doors allow the entire rear of the house to be opened to the pool and deck, creating a seamless flow between indoors and out.
Salvaging a 19th Century building, that once was a stable and a troop hall, in central Stockholm says something about your vision. It speaks to the respect and acknowledgment of the past and how you pursue pushing the envelope by embracing it. Serving as consultants in industrial design, product design, packaging design, art direction, consumer insight and architecture, No Picnic had to unfold a space that allows for creative exploration, diverse prototyping and absolute comfort. Although building an environment within a protected building is no easy task, Swedish duo Elding Oscarson, saw the opportunity to create ingenious ways to occupy and divide the interior envelope.
The program asked for large, open office spaces, prototype rooms, project rooms and a striking customer area. In order to achieve such compartmentalization, the architect used an old trick to divide while making the space seem bigger, a reflective aluminum wall. This division not only makes the space feel bigger but also allows the exterior light to bounce off the interior, washing the entire office with natural light. Carrying this thought of maximizing the space, Elding Oscarson placed a spiral staircase at the intersection of two walls to access the mezzanine and keep an ample open floor plate below.
Dentist Mattias Fierbiger chose the space for his new dental office; an old dancing studio in a historical art deco building. The space had high ceilings with magnificent stucco detailing and beautiful oak wood flooring. Though Dr. Fierbiger had a vision for his soon to be office, he decided to call in design enthusiasts Peter Ippolito and Gunter Fleitz of Ippolito Fleitz Group to take charge of the interiors.
The dental office is called Weissraum Dental Surgery, Weissraum meaning white space, which became a driving force for the interior design. All of the historical detailing was kept intact and carefully touched up while hints of gold were added for the feeling of opulence. The waiting room is decked out in unique modern furniture, gold shelving punched into the white walls, and white sheers wrapping the space, reminiscent of a modern lounge to give the feel of hospitality and service.
Throughout the rest of the space fluorescent tube lighting is not only used as a source of light but also a repetitious design element. The office walls are made of glass which is treated with a tiny mirror grid towards which gets tighter towards the center to make the space private. People passing by the outside of the office would only be able to see the flooring and the stunning ceilings.