Category Archives: Spaces & Places

Environments as Storytelling


Click the image to view the brief video clip.

When we were little, my brothers and I would play this game where we would hold a wall mirror tile about chest high, and navigate the house solely by the reflection of the ceiling. There was something fun about the slight disorientation and the shift in our perspective — it felt like we were walking on the moon.

That may have been the start of my fascination with physical environments. Or, maybe it was when I encountered my first Richard Serra sculpture — the rigid, looming enormity of those rusted steel walls and the flowing psychological push / pull imposed upon me as I transited the form. I do know that with that experience came the realization of the subtle power that our surroundings have on us.

Lately, I’ve become more heavily invested in the study (and have begun dabbling in the design) of physical spaces as storytelling. I’m intensely curious about how this plays out in the workplace, specifically how environmental experience shapes internal cultural behavior and, in turn, a company’s brand.

In addition to reading reams on the subject, I find great inspiration in the art world and was immediately engaged by this trailer for Olafur Eliasson: Space is Process. More than what he says in the voice over — which is completely compelling, don’t get me wrong — I was fascinated by the people’s reactions and body language as they engage with his installations.

Off to learn more about the the full film — I hope you enjoy!



Ace is the Place


As a designer of brand experiences, I am crazy-go-nuts about checking out interesting environments. Based on several recommendations from friends and this sensational, hand-drawn wall mural by Timothy Goodman, I’m mandating a stay at the Ace Hotel on my next trip to NYC.

[via designworklife]


The Friday Fast Five

1. Seth’s Blog: SlickFinally getting around to reading Seth Godin’s Linchpin, which reminded me to stop in for a glance at his fabulous blog. In today’s post, he reminds us to be authentic. Wise words, as always.

2. DIY Electroluminescent Display Panels | While the technology itself isn’t new, the ability to do it yourself is fairly recent and could make the process more affordable overall (making some of my clients very happy). [via NOTCOT]

3. The Edges of the World, an installation by Ernesto Neto | Adding to my already pressing longing to visit London is this experiential exhibit at the Hayward Gallery. Neto’s work centers around transforming spaces into dramatic, participatory environments that invite the occupants to explore and interact with others. [via NOTCOT]

4. Steelcase Showroom : NeoCon 2010 | I didn’t attend this year, but I’m bound and determined to make it in 2011. In the meantime, I’ve been devouring the NC’10 feeds and images. This one is particularly gorgeous — I expect nothing less from Steelcase.

5. Aarhus Gymnastics and Motor Skills Hall | Closing out on the theme of architectural interiors, this amazing space makes me want to get out and play.


DIY Room Styling


Soooo want to take the rest of the week off to play with Olioboard, an online mood board generator. Created by the user experience masters at Keele UX, the interactive space styling tool allows you to easily drag and drop from an ever expanding library of items, or pull from your own saved sets. No scissors or glue needed!

[via @ariacreative]


Instant Interior Inspiration

The new issue of Lonny is online! There’s always treasure to be found in these virtual pages, and their dedication to high-low design makes it accessible to every budget. Plus, you can catch up on any missed issues in the archive. With such luscious photography, I don’t even miss the physically printed piece.

Makes me wonder… how do you all feel about online magazines?


Modern & Multi-functional


Last month, I attended a conference for Architects and Designers where one of the speakers suggested a compelling method of successful workspace design. The idea being to consider the user as a co-creator of the environment and maximize the capacity for adaptation.

The Geology Teacher Chair, named for the interlocking pieces that suggest the shifting of Earth’s tectonic plates, delivers on that very approach (and it’s just plain cool).

[via HomeTone]


Make Your Own


As a direct channel between designers’ concepts and the consumer marketplace, Ooga Studio has become an ideation source that fosters the freshest thinking creatives. Oooga takes care of day-to-day business details, allowing designers to focus on their explorations.

Take, for example, the stylishly clever stainless steel and wood veneer Flat Lamp. This bit of fun, modern DYI delivers flat and readily transforms into 3-D radiance by your capable hands.

(via um+a)