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The Arcadis offices in Milan (D2U).

Implement the smart working approach and create more synergy in the working team through a smart design: that was the brief given to D2U to design the Arcadis offices in Milan. Furniture, materials and colours were chosen to improve an ergonomic approach, sound absorption and to create a comfortable and, at the same time, flexible environment.

The 1.500 sqm workplace chosen by Arcadis to join all the company’s offices in the same place, as the Managing Director Roberto Talotta says, represented the opportunity to “create more and more synergy within the working team and to efficiently implement group guidelines on smart working approach”. The architect Jacopo della Fontana has led the D2U architect team along with the Arcadis Project Manager Alberto Spacone.

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The project has been conceived with two big naves, accessible by both the two floors, connected by open stairs and separated in the centre with a mezzanine. The offices are divided into activity areas, separated by big conference tables and individual and private workstations, allowing, however, the required flexibility to embrace the possible company’s future needs and changes.

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These space, along with the reception area and the internal coffee bar, contributes to create a good balance of individual, teamworking and private spaces, in order to allow the workers to find the perfect setting for each daily need.

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As Jacopo della Fontana says, “working alongside with the client has allowed us to implement the brief with a creative approach, respecting schedules and costs constraints”, focusing on materials, colors and furniture, in order to create a communicative environment, where all the material, sound absorption and ergonomic parameters are thoroughly respected.
The furniture is most of all designed by the Dutch company Ahrend, with the adding of some other pieces as the moquette Interface.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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New trends from Worktech17: Living Office, co-design and IoT.

A self-learning space, open-designed for the future needs, based on the individual experience and wellbeing. This is the way of designing that was debated at the forum Worktech 2017, among leader companies as Herman Miller and Interface and architecture firms like Carlo Ratti Associati, Zaha Hadid Architects and Studio Banana.

The office must follow the life that takes place in it. That’s the core of the Herman Miller’s seven provocations, seven statements thought to guide the discussion between designers and companies, and based on the last company’s research “Living Office”, presented at Worktech17, one of the worldwide most important forum dedicated to real estate, technology and innovation. The study has involved anthropologists, psychologists and designers in a new holistic approach to the workplace, aiming to define the facts we need to understand when we think about today’s ways of working.

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One of these provocations states: “we feel before we think”. The environment has a great impact on us, therefore it is the main feature we have to take care of. It must be a living environment, where communication takes constantly place (quoting a provocation, “you + me = 3”) in a “wonderful mess” that facilitate creativity and innovation.

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Ulrich Blum, from Zaha Hadid Architects, has given a really good insight during his speech “The self-learning workplace”, describing a way of designing that starts from the use of IoT and sensors to collect data about the habits of every employee. “We have to think about the office as a “living network” Blum said. The data are divided in different parameters as distance, visibility and lighting, in order to give to designers the right knowledges to create a space that fits with the needs of every single person living in the workplace, optimizing the desk arrangement, the communication, the use of working time and the disposition of different environments. Furthermore, datas give the opportunity, using the generated algorithms, for creating more effective team works and arrange them in an ideal workplace. “The idea is to enhance the hierarchy of the office as it really is, and not as it is in the boss’s mind. We have to join furniture and artificial intelligence in order to increase the flexibility the furniture can give us”, Blum concludes.

As we can already see, technology is crucial in nowadays office, even though, quoting another provocation, “we have to forget about it”, meaning it has to be like a comfortable shoe: we have to perfectly walk in it, without feeling anything. As Marco Maria Pedrazzo, by Carlo Ratti Associates, said, exposing the firm’s research about the “technological management of the workplace”, “technology has to create a resilient environment. We have to change our perspective: it is the environment that has to adapt to us, not us to the environment. We have to design as we are designing 20 years ahead, and the only way to do that is making experiments, trying prototypes and see how people react to them“.

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Even though it seems in contrast with Herman Miller’s provocation “The next thing isn’t for you”, it isn’t, because innovation must be based on the company’s culture, and design must fit with the actual ways of working and corporate policy of each situation, but at the same time it has to be open-designed, giving the chance of being reinvented in the future, following the evolution of the company itself and of the times.
Something too ahead, in fact, can scare people, while innovation has to generate engagement, fulfilment and happiness.

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Key Portilla, from Studio Banana, suggested some interesting approach, like co-design sessions, where managers and employee are an active part in the workplace’s construction or restyling, or university-campus-like offices, based on a different environment that supports different states of mind and activity.

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Finally, even in a new tech-workspace, nature can be the secret of a happy and stress-free office. Oliver Heath, from Interface, has talked about “biophilic design“, meaning the need to recreate the “sense of nature“, enhancing the presence of real natural elements, like light, plants and water, or a reference to them, using colors, patterns and materials that help to recreate visually and emotionally the feeling of really being in a natural environment.
Report by Mario Colombo (Herman Miller), editing by Gabriele Masi.

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Eco-sustainability and design for resilient flooring.

After creating countless styles of modular carpet, distinguished by high performances and sustainability, Interface launches a luxury modular vinyl flooring featured by the same green vision and based on biophilic design approach.

Level Set is the first Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) collection by Interface. It is environmental friendly and is inspired by natural elements like wood and stone, according to biophilic design approach.
It offers options that evoke distressed, reclaimed and exposed natural materials. The textures, colours and patterns available provide more light reflection to maximising the benefits of daylight.
Available in 28 variations of Natural and Textured Woodgrains & Stones, it comes in Interface’s standard (25 cm x 1 m and 50 x 50 cm squares) and is complementary to carpet tile collections.
Since it is fully compatible in size and height, you can combine existing carpet and new LVT for a unique space of varied textures and designs.

 

We’re seeing an increased focus on cohesive design throughout the built environment, as well as a rise in demand for soft and hard flooring that blends well and functions as part of a modular design system– said Mandy Leeming, Design and Development Manager for Interface EMEALevel Set embraces our customers’ interest in flooring that has the look of natural materials with the functionality, durability and affordability of LVT, while ensuring they can select a mix of hard and soft flooring from a single partner to create a unified look and feel.”

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An eco-sustainable design aimed at environmental comfort.
To install Level Set is simple and clean thanks to glue-free TacTiles. It emits virtually zero VOCs and allows for an environmental footprint over 90% lower than installation with traditional glue adhesives.
Engineered to compatible height (4.5mm total thickness) with Interface’s carpet tiles, providing the ability to effortlessly move from hard to soft flooring without transition strips, eliminating an unnecessary trip hazard and reducing the number of materials for specification and purchase.
To improve acoustic comfort the sound absorbing “Sound Choice” is available for LVT collections.

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Biophilia and Mindful Design at Wellness17 (London, 9/5th).

Oliver Heath and Aidan Walker are two of the key speakers for the conference Wellness17 that will address main wellbeing issues in the workplace. From a mental and physiology perspective that pretends to improve our work life balance to a design approach to generate a healthier and more natural work space.
The leading event on wellness in the workplace, will return to London on 5th September 2017 at Credit Suisse.

Oliver Heath talks about Biophilic Design.

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The concept of Biophilia is becoming more present within the workplace as employers and employees alike seek healthier and more balanced working lives. Oliver Heath will discuss “The Science and Style of Biophilic design”. A new research that demonstrates how we can harness the human attraction to nature to reduce stress and aid recuperation by utilising Biophilic design principles. In this way we can make tangible benefits to the workplace including reducing costs such as absenteeism whilst improving productivity, engagement and happiness.

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Oliver Heath is Founder of Heath Design Ltd, an architectural and interior design practice combining three key strands: sustainable design, consumer engagement and communications to inspire the uptake of future thinking in the built environment. He stimulates the adoption of happier, healthier places to live and work. Oliver is currently a Biophilic Design ambassador for Interface flooring.

Photos: courtesy of Interface and HW Style.

Aidan Walker talks about Mindful Design.

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Aidan Walker, Director of Aidan Walker Associates and fellow of the Royal Society of Arts will share his thoughts on “Mindful Design. Principles in practice”. 

Leaders in business, education, hospitality, health and government are paying ever more careful attention to personal wellbeing. It can be about cranking up productivity, generating a new profit centre for guests who mistake luxury for inner solace, or reducing stress.
For workplace professionals and designers, the driving principle is changing from Sustainability to ‘Wellness’. With the ‘Seven C’s of Mindful Design’ Aidan Walker proposes a map of the new professional and personal landscape.

Aidan has practised Hatha Yoga, including a spell teaching, all his adult life, and in his 20s spent six years as a fully dedicated member of the Brahma Kumaris, living and teaching the principles of Raja Yoga. This has led to the publication of the book ‘The Ecology of the Soul’, and he is now working on developing its message to apply specifically to mindfulness in the practice of design.

Wellness17 will also focus on confronting mental health in the workplace, defining best practice, work-life balance, people, place, design and much more. Wellness17 builds on the success of Unwired’s Worktech series of conferences and encompasses all aspects of Wellness including Mind, Body and Spirit, addressing some of the most interesting and challenging subjects such as the stigma of mental health, taming technology, nutrition, design and much more.
Book now at the Wellness17 Early Bird rate and save £100!

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Global Change: nature-inspired, biophilic flooring.

Global Change is Interface’s most versatile collection to-date, launched during last NeoCon. It was designed by Kari Pei, the company’s Lead Product Designer, and pairing nature-inspired biophilic design with Interface’s modular flooring system expertise. The collection offers architects and designers the ability to bring biophilic flooring into their spaces, leading to more positive experiences and improved wellbeing for the people who use them.

Biophilia is a growing trend in interior design and architecture, but we can not say that the “innate tendency to seek connections with nature and other forms of life” is a novelty indeed. This scientific hypothesis was introduced by Edward O. Wilson in 1984.
Interface has been among the first companies to intercept this philosophy and has been applying biophilic design approach for several years in its textile flooring systems.
Global Change is the last collection by Interface, launched at NeoCon 2017 and offers an integrated range of design options that can be composed to solve a variety of unique business challenges.
The collection evokes foliage through artistic interpretation of tree and leaf shading patterns. Biophilic elements and references are also reflected in random patterns and fluid transitions inspired by natural textures.


Global Change is comprised of seven face styles available in six organic color palettes. Progression 1, 2,3, the collection’s foundational tiles, offer three gradated base textures at three different price points and pile heights.
Glazing and Shading take inspiration from the tree canopy with foliage appearing as positive shapes against striations of texture.
Ground and Raku resemble the cracked appearance of dried earth and can be installed as non-directional squares.
The styles are available in a mixture of 50cm x 50 cm squares and 25cm x 100cm Skinny PlanksTM, ranging from flat to plush. To complement the seven face tiles, the Interface design team developed six earthy, mineral-based colors for the collection, inspired by global trends:
Eclipse, Evening Dusk, Desert Shadow, Fawn, Daylight and Morning Mist.
Global Change has one of the lowest carbon footprints of any of Interface’s global collections to-date. and is in line with Interface’s sustainability commitments.
Global Change takes the end-user on a journey from the forest to the coast, offering beautiful aesthetics that also deliver modular versatility and functionality – Kari Pei quoted – Each product within the collection was designed to harmoniously blend into the next, and the collection has the unique ability to adapt as design and tastes evolve.”

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Interface appointed Nigel Stansfield as president of EMEA.

Nigel Stansfield is the new president of EMEA appointed by Interface, the worldwide leader in the design and production of modular flooring products, committed to sustainability and minimising its impact on the environment while enhancing shareholder value. Innovation an sustainability are the key points included in the Stansfield ’s ambitious business objectives.

We have ambitious business objectives to drive global growth. Achieving these targets depends on innovation across our business and through the supply chain to provide new product offerings and grow the core carpet tile business. It’s a privilege to have been part of Interface for over 30 years and a pleasure to have the opportunity to lead the business forward and continue our journey in achieving these goals.” Stansfield quoted.
Stansfield has over 30 years’ experience in the industry at Interface and previously held a variety of roles in both manufacturing and innovations. He has had global responsibility for developing and implementing Interface’s strategies in innovations, sustainability, product and design, and most recently held the position of Chief Supply Chain Officer.


His extensive technological background and expertise will complement the company’s growth strategy throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Stansfield’s responsibility will be to drive growth in the core carpet tile business, while bringing new offerings to market and delivering supply chain efficiencies. He will also spearhead efforts to deliver Interface’s Mission Zero® commitments in the region, and pursue the company’s new Climate Take Back mission focused on addressing climate change.
In 2014 Interface commissioned The Human Spaces Report, a global research into biophilic design. The survey demonstrates the relationship between individuals and their environment can be a crucial determinant of how they feel, perform and interact with others. This research inspired The innovative Human Nature floor carpet collections.

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Evergreen patterns for flooring.

World Woven by Interface is a new, handcrafted feel carpet tile collection inspired by some of the world’s most beloved textiles.
The designer David Oakey was deeply influenced by the timeless familiarity of local woollen textiles, memory of his youth in United Kingdom – from Scottish tweed and tartan to Saori hand-weaving.

World Woven comprises six Skinny Planks and three Flor by Interface squares, each with eight colours and made with 100% recycled content nylon. All nine styles weave together nods to some of history’s most enduring designs, uncomplicated, elegant patterns that keep us warm and lift our spirits.

The colours in the four core styles recall undyed wools with just a bit of contrast. To complement this set, two colour studies incorporate many hues mingled together to create a vivid, hand-made effect.

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Whether used as a simple, neutral background or combined to create diversity and movement, giving you an exciting new world of options.

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The best installations at Orgatec 2016.

The subject proposed by Orgatec “Creativity works” was carefully rendered in the design of the exhibition areas. The 2016 favourite material is natural wood and the lively colours play the lead. On the whole, we were favourably impressed, some stands were thrilling… and some disappointing. 

The competition between top-level fitting-out designs is high, yet finding the WOW! effect, captivating and enhancing the likewise top-quality products isn’t easy.

Creativity Works
At the boulevard close to the north entrance, The students by HSD Hochschule of Dusseldorf explained their vision. A not commercial yet most interesting design that shows a fresh and unconventional view combining different workplaces marked by a strong identity, however lacking the right communication, which makes the concepts hard to understand.

Kokuyo

Kokuyo’s is definitely the most exciting one. The space designed by Nendo is a bright, total white background sets off the pure geometric shapes and through their non saturated colours the objects seem to be floating in a space that wipes out the three dimensions to create a dream-like and festive atmosphere.

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Well-done! The designers of Interface stand succeeded in finding an original way to present a hard-to-display product as carpets, based on a concept of sustainable development. The new collection exhibited on 180 sqm -with organic structure and texture inspired by nature- clearly express the biophilic design and the Interface’s philosophy.
The “entrance portal” brings up the subject of nature as a source of wellbeing; the most original setting is a residential one, fitted with retro units, that shows the new World Woven collection, designed by David Oakey, drawing inspiration from traditional weaves like tweed, mélange, loose –textured weave, but even pied-de-poule and tartan, that quote the optimistic prints of the 50s.

Sedus

Inside a1200 sqm space under the claim “Create space with personality, Sedus stakes on the holistic view of wellbeing. Inspired by nature, the stand concept was developed by Evolution Design in Zürich. They has worked with a range of cell structures, developing a spatial concept which creates a harmonic pattern linking the design of the furniture, the different zones and the gangways. The cell-like organic structure of the booth design generates openness while at the same time creating a framework for the various application areas of “conference and training”, “informal working and relaxation”, “workplace and concentration” and finally “meeting and collaboration”. A semi-transparent veil envelopes the stand like a membrane and stimulates curiosity. The really thronged stand could be admired from the bar area on the upper floor.

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Pedrali
An dreamlike and surreal setting at Pedrali’s, designed by Calvi Brambilla, elegant and charming, although the idea of three-dimensional pictures showing different environments recalls what Vitra has proposed some years ago.

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Sinetica

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“The evolution of space” – according to the architect and designer Paolo Mantero, who designed Sinetica’s stand and is new art director for the Italian company – creates a series of environments in which home and work life, private and collective life, develop seamlessly.

Vitra

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We expected more from Vitra after the announcement of a stand named “Work” taking up the whole 5.2 pavilion.  The “Collage Office” was expected to give ideas for the complex workplace scenario but has been a bit of disappointment. The urban scheme is predictable and the new, beautiful products displayed in several “collages” on the right or on high, plain platforms are not set off..
the design of the space involved two international architectural offices: –Pernilla Ohrstedt based in London and Jonathan Olivares based in Los Angeles– maybe it is a new trend in exhibiting design that we cannot understand.
Vitra was always a pioneer, it might be a new displaying style. Hopefully there will be not too many emulators…

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A Creative Campus in Milan: Jenner 19.

“Turning a sad, empty property into an inviting, creative campus presented a huge challenge, overcome thanks to the vision and determination of everyone involved”. The architect Jacopo della Fontana’s words summarize the project of the Publicis Group’s Creative Campus in Milan: a place designed for all the workers’ well being, an office that “people have no desire to leave, simply because they feel good”.

A garden, a playing field, a vegetable garden, a kindergarten, a restaurant, a gym, a bar and a cinema: “It sounds like the description of a holiday resort, but it’s actually an office, where bedrooms are replaced with flexible workstations with a new, colourful, modern appearance.” Publicis Group and Jacopo della Fontana (D2U) focused the project of the Creative Campus of Jenner st. 19 in Milan, on the main garden, designed by HW Style, the centre of the social life and interaction for the over 700 people that live in the building everyday. A space where the workers of the different companies, Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi and Publicis meet and enjoy the areas for breaks or informal meetings, the basketball/futsal court, the vegetable garden, or gym.

Although exchange and interconnection are the core of the project, the companies have their own distinct working environment, with three different doorways, equally visible on the facade where screen-printed, coloured film was applied, which creates a highly colourful, dynamic effect.
Also the ground floor is dedicated to areas serving all the agencies, with a cafeteria and a large theatre with 100 seats, numerous meeting rooms of different sizes and a crèche.
An uniform approach has been used also for the upper floors, where the different offices follow the same design, marked by some variants in terms of style: modular desks, perpendicular to the windows, occupy the open space , shielded from the corridor by 1.80 m partitions, in different colours and shapes according to the company they belong to.
The interior has been enriched with designed furniture from different brands as the dealer Cardex, and the top level suppliers; among them: Caimi Brevetti (Snowbound sound absorbing panels), dieffebi (storage),  Interface (floor covering), Universal Selecta (partition walls).
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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Joyful and inspiring offices for a multinational.

A multinational that gave a free hand to e45 creative and professional designers who, relying on a twenty-year experience, hand-picked reliable partners -the dealer Cardex and some of the best suppliers company like Dieffebi, Interface, Armstrong, Arper, a.s.o.- to carry out a functional workplace, really amazing, bright and versatile.

Pitney Bowes is a US multinational that employs 15.000 people in the world and works in supplies and delivery services. The Italian branch has just decided to move its office, in order to match the new needs resulting from its development.
The design of the new office was entrusted to e45 (Bruno De Rivo e Pietro Morandi), supported by Cardex for furniture and settings.
The headquarters include administrative offices, a demo room for presentation to the clients, the online assistance service for management softwares and a workshop.
The rooms mirrors the “technical” trait of the company, yet they are bright and attractive at the same time.

Respectful of ergonomics and environmental comfort – especially as lighting and acoustics are concerned – they  follow the contemporary dictates of an active, lively workplace pleasant to live in.

The design is a balanced mix of open plan and offices and closed rooms, individual and collective areas: open space offices with “writeable walls” are furnished with bench desks and useful storages (Primo System by Dieffebi); meetings rooms in several sizes, huddle rooms for video conferences, and also a kitchenette are closed by transparent and sound insulating glass partition walls by Gecopar facing on the open plan offices.

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As regards look and finishing touches, the company gave carte blanche to the designers.
Moderately used corporate colours for the visible technical equipment, the wall graphics in the reception area and ornamental details that make these offices exceptionally fascinating: corporate colours in the round sound-absorbing panels (Canopy by Armstrong) “twined” with the round hanging lamps; blue thick, domestic-looking curtains and the irregular chromatic pattern of the flooring by Interface.

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Photo by Matteo Zanardi.

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Transparency, curves and protection against noise.

Can we can obtain acoustic privacy areas in an open space by keeping the visual continuity and without using rigid and orthogonal components? The modular system Zen by Universal Selecta meets all these requirements.

Zen, the system of modular lounge furniture for a high acoustic privacy, was presented at Milano Design Week during the convivial party “L’Alchimia di 3 Progetti” with the participation of several companies: Universal Selecta, Sedus, Staygreen, Interface e Guzzini.

Modular system for lounges with high acoustic privacy. Design, environmental transparency, simplicity of assembly. It offers reserved spaces with multiples dimensions within common areas of work, integrating into the surrounding context.
Glass and metal join to create reserved and welcoming spaces.
The modularity and customization of Zen make it suitable for contemporary and dynamic scenarios.

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Textile floor to improve the acoustic comfort.

The choice of the textile floor is always determined by different reasons as the design, the functionality, the sustainability, the prize and the service. In order to evaluate precisely the performances we have to consider other characteristics such as the sound absorption function. Interface has presented some fundamental advices in the manual Just The Facts.

Think about an open space office: the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system, low partitions, ringing phones, noisy copying machines and a constant talking in the background.
All these sounds, directly transmitted and reflected by the surfaces can create an unbearable noise level.
Especially in this kind of workspaces, the use of the right sound absorption material is crucial to create a better environment.
The textile floor coverings have an important role in reducing the noise reverberation, absorbing up to 10 times more than other floorings, but the maximum of the efficiency can be reach only with the right choice.
First of all it is fundamental to clearly understand which acoustic problem you have to face, that is always different, in oder to estimate which impact a textile covering can have on it: is it necessary  either to improve the intelligibility of the speech, as in a boardroom, or to increase the sound absorption in order to give a better sense of privacy, as in an open office environment?
It is very important to “know what you a re listening to”, that is defining the peculiar sound and frequencies of the space that need to be cut out: an high sound absorption coefficient, in fact, doesn’t always guarantee the best results, on the contrary it could be detrimental.
The human hearing is more sensitive to medium and high frequency noises: absorbing too many background low-frequency sounds can therefore enhance more annoying ones.
InterfaceFLOR measures the levels of sound absorption of its material using the EN ISO 354, based on international standards.
In the end it is useful to remember that even if textile floors have better results than other flooring, they can’t be enough: it is necessary to work on ceilings and walls, critical elements for a proper acoustic environment.
Text by Gabriele Masi.

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Beautiful Thinking: green design inspired by nature.

The connection between nature and people is in Interface’s DNA, it is litterally and figuratively woven into every square and plank of carpet the company produces.
Sustainability, the core every product and manufacturing processes of the company, is also enhanced by the Biophilic design and the Beautiful Thinking in the new products.

Art, design and architecture inspired by Nature have been around as long as we have. What’s taken shape over just the last two decades is evidence that designs that mimic Nature not only please the eye, they also change the people who inhabit them: people are more engaged, more collaborative, more creative. The design inspired by Nature promotes a sense of wellbeing.
For this reason Interface’s approach is Beautiful Thinking oriented -that means to create a product and a planet that are good for people- and the new products are inspired by Biophilia.
The new collections are sustainable (made with 100% recycled content nylon yarn and manufactured respecting the green life cycle of the product from production to disposal) and create a sense of well-being because they reproduce the tactile and visual textures present in outdoor scenery: cobblestone paths or grassy fields, stone or gravel paths.
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Equal Measure collection is inspired by the traditional cobblestone streets found all over the world, creating a sense of the familiar and the original at the same time. The classic, irregular look of a lived-in street is combined with the soft luxury of carpet tile and all its associated benefits.

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Narratives
collection tells a fascinating tale about contrast and minimalism. A figurative pattern created by differences in pile height and construction.

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Near & Far Collection is somewhere between made and found. The organic reference is clear, but we can see the artisan’s hand in the shape and materials.

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Interface’s latest technical innovation.

Global modular flooring manufacturer, Interface, has unveiled its latest technical innovation by creating the world’s first recycled latex substitute using laminate found in car glass. Driven by its commitment to Mission Zero, Interface has developed a method for using recycled poly-vinyl butyral (PVB) to replace the existing latex precoat widely used in the carpet tile industry to fix the yarn to the backing. Interface’s Scandinavian collection is the first range available with recycled PVB.

PVB is the laminate found in glass which prevents it from shattering, and is most commonly found in car windscreens. The industry has been recycling this type of glass for some time but had found no solution for recycling the PVB.
Working alongside new and old partners, including Shark Solutions, Interface invested 10 years of research in developing the ground-breaking process and, as a result of this co-innovation, PVB has been given a second life in a new, sustainable supply chain.
PVB has a carbon footprint that is 80 per cent less than the existing latex precoat used in the industry. Interface Europe currently uses 43 per cent of recycled or bio-based raw materials and the Mission Zero goal is 100 per cent by 2020.
The new material will bring Interface’s use of recycled or bio-based raw materials to 66 per cent when applied to all products and, as such, in the next two years, Interface believes products with up to 90 per cent recycled or biobased content will be achievable.
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Milan Design Week 2015: events on Workplace and the new WOW.

WOW! offers a selection of the most interesting events dedicated to Workplace 3.0 and new Ways Of Working: at the Salone del Mobile or in locations of the Milan Design Week 2015. The events and preview of the new products will be updated in the coming days. Stay tuned and follow WOW!
For events: Kinnarps “Workplace Wellness”, USM “Rethink the Modular”, Dieffebi “Color trends for the workplace”, Involucri, Workshops by  Assufficio, events at La Passeggiata Agora’s at Salone Ufficio, please see the dedicated articles.

San Babila Design District: The Cinema (Casa dell’Opera Nazionale Balilla).

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Great curiosity for the new San Babila Design District the center is the House National Opera Balilla. It will be the  headquarters of designjunction edit Milan and Tom Dixton install The Cinema inside the 400 sqm theater. After a period of neglect the charming buildings built in the ’30s (10000 sqm total) re-born thanks to the design.
Title event: designjunction edit, The Cinema, The Green Room.
Where: via Pietro Mascagni 6  Milano
Whene: 15,16,17,18 april (h 11/19), 19 april (11/15)
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Interface: flooring on show and Bowls Design Trophy (Via Tortona 21).
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Present with its textile flooring in two of the most important installations of Design Week 2015, Interface also provides a break of pure fun with his bowling tournament. The innovative Interface textile flooring are also inside of “The Walk” by Michele De Lucchi at the “Involucri” exhibition designed by Studio De Ponte at Lambrate. Then we will have fun at the Bocce Design Trophy, now in its 3rd edition.

Titolo evento: Bocce Design Trophy.
Dove: Boccino di via Tortona 21.
Quando: 15 aprile dalle 18.00.

Futurecraft. Tomorrow by design #1 (Carlo Ratti).
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At Spazio FGM an exhibition by Carlo Ratti  Associates to show how can design accelerate the transformation of the present.
Title event: Futurecraft. Tomorrow by design #1
Where: Spazio FGM, via Bergognone 27
When 15/19 aprile (opening 13 aprile ore 19,30)

Free Pixel by Carlo Ratti.

Title event: Free Pixel” by Carlo Ratti
Where: Artemide Showroom, Via Manzoni 12
When: 14 aprile. Opening 15 aprile,  ore 20.00

Future Ways of Living: Daan Roosegarde ( Meet the Media Guru).
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Daan Roosegaarde “techno poet” and innovator of interactive design will be speaker at the conference organized by Meet the Media Guru.

Title event: Future Ways of Living: Daan Roosegarde.
Where: Museo Nazionale Scienza e Tecnologia, via San Vittore 21
When: 16 aprile
ore 19.30

The words are bridges (Lombardini 22).

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A shared moment, a way to a more conscious and environmentally sustainable lifestyle.
Title event: Le Parole sono Ponti
Where: Via Lombardini 22
When: 16 aprile dalle 19 alle 24.

Blue Design Factory (Fantoni e Studio Ragni).
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Opening of Blue Design Factory, a Fantoni and Studio Ragni shared space, an experimental place for new ways of working.
Title event: Blue Design Factory
Where: Via Santa Sofia 27
When: 16 aprile ore 22

Knoll: Celebrate Harry Bertoia (P.zza Bertarelli 2).
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Knoll celebrates the centenary of the birth of Harry Bertoia showing the figure of the eclectic designer through all forms of art. From the legendary Diamond Chair to “sound sculptures” , the exhibition is designed by Studio OMA.
Title event: Celebrate Harry Bertoia.
Where: Showroom Knoll, Piazza Bertarelli 2, Milano.
When: 14/19 Aprile (h 10/20) 

Sacea: Recharging Zone (Ordine Architetti Milano).
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For the third year Sacea sets up in the courtyard of the Ordine Architetti di Milano, in the Brera Design District, a landmark for travelers of design.
An oasis of tranquility where to stop, sit down and relax, recharge yourself and your cell phone, drink a glass of water and socialize.
Title event: Sacea: Recharging Zone.
Where: Ordine Architetti Milano, via Solferino 17.
When: 14/19 aprile (h10/20).

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“Involucri”, Emotional surfaces (Via Ventura 15).

“Shells: Emotional surfaces, between Touch, Light and Matter” (Involucri), designed by De Ponte Studio Architect, together with Ar-thema, is a perceptive landscape where matter architecture turns into a sensory territory, an emotional path made of objects, surfaces, attractive materials and concepts of light meant to create wonder, agreement, interest and curiosity. Interface is one of the sponsors.

With this installation De Ponte Studio considers the emerging rules, that regulate the “Marketing Emozionale ed Esperienziale”(Experiential and emotional marketing) in the fields of architectural design, interior design and industrial design, and provide, first of all, for the taking care of  human emotions and reasons to choose, even inside the workplace.
Sponsors: Interface, Lucente, Florim, Interface, Mizar e Oikos.
Title: “Involucri: Superfici emozionali tra Tatto, Luce e Materia”
Where: Via Ventura 15, Lambrate District.
When: 14/19 april (h 10/20) opening 14/4 (invitation only)involucri-de-ponte-interface-wow-webmagazine-lambrate-ventura

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The “Human”side of Nature: sound absorbing and evocative floor coverings.

Human Nature is built on the premise that designing spaces which evoke the senses through light, colour, texture and natural detail generate wellness and spark the human creative spirit. The new collection was designed by David Oakey, longtime Interface collaborator and world leader in sustainable design practices, to create vital and eye catching floor coverings for offices and contract spaces.

Interface’s Human Nature takes its cues from the visual, tactile textures found in the most elemental of floor coverings (forest floors, grassy fields and pebbled garden paths) drawing on the innate connection humans have to the earth.


“Scientists have found that humans crave sensory change and variation, though our work environments are often flat, unnatural places,” Oakey said. “And though there’s no doubt that the design community is drawn to the aesthetics of concrete, stone, and wood, the physical and acoustical benefits of soft surfaces are impossible to ignore. In Human Nature we’ve combined the best of both worlds — the hard surface look of planks with the benefits of soft, textured carpet tile that feels comfortable and natural underfoot.”
Human Nature is inspired by biophilia and respects Nature: it is a sustainable collection, made with 100% recycled content nylon yarn and manufactured respecting the green life cycle of the product from production to disposal.

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An intuitive software to simulate and “hear” acoustics.

In order to supply its custmers and users of Snowsound with an increasingly efficient service, Caimi has recently added a new acoustic-anticipatory software to the measuring instruments, calculation software and other facilities already used at the R&D department of the company. Giorgio Caimi explains the features of this innovative software that allows to “hear” and view the acoustics in a room.

The innovative software, developed in Denmark, is used for acoustic simulations and measurements in all kinds of environments: auditoria for music or speech, industrial environments, atriums, canteens, restaurants, offices, schools,railway stations, stadiums.
Besides simulating the condition of rooms before the works,  the programme allows to check more solutions as regards the the positioning  of Snowsound material, in order to suggest the most suitable arrangement from an acoustic and architectural point of view.
3D models can be created or imported from other CAD software. Materials, sources and receivers are handled smoothly in a user friendly interface. Results are room acoustical parameters presented in graphs and color maps, miscellaneous graphs.


The most amazing feature of this software is the auralisation algorithm, namely the possibility of listening to the room acoustics  before and after the acoustic treatment with  Snowsound.
The functions of the simulator include the most spectacular  capacity of viewing, through an intuitive graphic art, the propagation of sound inside the three-dimensional model, before and after the positioning of Snowsound.
You can fit a few reception points in the three-dimensional model for listening and one or more acoustic sources that emit sounds.
A sophisticated algorithm allows to calculate the acoustic variations on the several spots considered, according to the different materials used, the sound decay and the positioning of Snowsound. That allows to hear the final effect of the acoustic correction before and after the works on the headphones.
Text by Giorgio Caimi, managing director of Caimi Brevetti and supervisor of Caimi Lab.

 

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Architect@work first Italian edition (Milan 19/20th November).

The first Italian edition of Architect@work will be held in Milan next November 19th and 20th at Centro Congressi MICO.It is an event specially tailored with a focus on innovation for architects, interior designers and other specifiers.
Among the innovative exhibiting companies are Akzo Nobel, De Castelli, Fonology, Quinze and Milan, Interface.

The innovative exhibition layout of Architect@work, created by C4 -Creative Fo(u)r, ensures optimal contact between exhibitors and visitors.
The innovative products presented by the exhibitors are presented in the exihibtion area (triangle) and on the walls. In each box, which comprises four modules, a multimedia console takes centre stage (for PC/laptop); traditional aisles are transformed into lounge areas: places to enjoy a drink, to chat, to share information and experiences.

 

Piazza-office Axa, Milan.

The new Axa’s headquarters is situated in the heart of Porta Nuova, the new in-progress City of Milan, in a building of the seventies thoroughly renovated and upgraded by Goring&Straja; through energy saving and reduced running expenses, air and lighting comfort, quality of building components and other details, this “no-smoking building” is now aiming the LEED classification at the Silver label.

If the outside look is what adds to the visibility of the Axa brand, likewise important is the role played by its interiors designed by Cristiana Cutrona (Revalue), perfectly conveying the image of the Insurance Group and the new ways of working adopted.

The interior design (17,000 sqm/800 employes) is based on the key concept of Piazza, the tipical Italian urban structure. “A clear reading code was chosen, the Piazza, to make work spaces immediately perceivable (and therefore usable), as well as the many functional areas and the way they relate and the functional hierarchies – explains arch Cutrona- a code to obtain visible boundaries inside a fluid and open setting rich in see-through effects. Task and circulation areas are linked in the central square, where ancillary activities are situated. The workplace is no longer meant as the surface of the single desk: “It’s me moving about and choosing where to stay and how”. A concept that gives concrete form to the far-sighted article “Your office is where you are” by Stone e Lucchetti that The Harvard Business Review published in 1984.
Space comfort and the right balance between form and function were the goals of interior design for rooms already heavily typified and typifying. The integrated study of typological, technological and practical solutions, colours, materials and textures with a special focus on a correct lighting and acoustic comfort allowed to reach their goal. The limited height of rooms didn’t allow the installation of modular false ceilings, so the acoustic quality had to be solved in an inventive way combining acoustic panels (Mitesco by Caimi Brevetti) on vertical and horizontal surfaces and flooring with high acoustic performance (Interface). In particular, the design of the ceiling panels was studied to blend with the lights and also to be an ornamental component.
Photo by Beppe Raso


Captions
1The main reception.
2 The large central “Piazza”.
3 Open-space office.
4 One of the ancillary areas.
5 Lounge area at 9th floor.
6 The auditorium.
7 The boardroom in the glass dome with a panoramic view.
8 Outside view of Axa headquarters in Milan renovated and upgraded by Goring&Straja.
9 The interior design key concept by Revalue.