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University Library Marne-la-Vallée \ Beckmann-N’Thepe Architects

Posted: 28 Sep 2012 08:27 PM PDT

Beckmann-N'Thepe Architects recently has completed the University Library Marne-la-Vallée.

BUM Olivier Amsellem 661 600x400 University Library Marne la Vallée \ Beckmann N'Thepe Architects

Image © Olivier Amsellem

BUM Olivier Amsellem 659 600x400 University Library Marne la Vallée \ Beckmann N'Thepe Architects

Image © Olivier Amsellem

BUM Olivier Amsellem 692 600x898 University Library Marne la Vallée \ Beckmann N'Thepe Architects

Image © Olivier Amsellem

BUM Olivier Amsellem 705 600x400 University Library Marne la Vallée \ Beckmann N'Thepe Architects

Image © Olivier Amsellem

Intercam \ SPACE

Posted: 28 Sep 2012 07:18 PM PDT

The design concept for the INTERCAM offices is based on providing customers with an atmosphere of solidity and reliability with a fun atmosphere inside while still capturing the essence of the bank.

The project, located in the Lago Zurich building in Plaza Carso, consists of 3,800 m2, on two floors.

Intercam SPACE 06 600x400 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

The public floor is a fundamental element of the project since it has a spacious reception area, meeting rooms for customers and meeting rooms for suppliers, canteens for customers and a currency exchange service counter. It should be noted that the customer canteens were designed to make the customer feel that they are eating in the comfort of someone's home. Details like the marble wall with the logo, the granite floor in the reception area and the lattice wall in reception, give the space a sense of seriousness while also capturing the cheerfulness of the bank.

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Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

The presidential suite, located on floor 10 has an area for secretaries, a private office for an assistant and the president's private office. The finishes are worth highlighting because the combination of wood, granite, carpet, glass, stone, lighting and ceiling details give the space a unique and different touch. The boardroom, emerging between the workstations, is a large space being a large sculptural envelope with its latticed facades, which provide privacy and hierarchy to that space.

Intercam SPACE 04 600x903 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

The rest of floors 10 and 09 are equipped with meeting rooms with audio-visual equipment, coffee areas, printing areas and casual meeting area which give a special touch to the floor as it contributes to team interaction as well as to freedom of use. The furniture selected for this project is unusual for a bank, since all the workstations are bench-type which makes the space more cheerful. Being open plan with workstations, meeting and private rooms in the core, lends a feeling of spaciousness, and a wonderful use of light on all four sides creating a sense of connectedness with the outside. The casual meeting areas which are created emulate exterior spaces, like parks, this is for users when they need a rest or when there are visitors they can go to these recreational spaces for a break. These spaces have areas for a coffee and for printing.

Intercam SPACE 03 600x398 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

Intercam SPACE 02 600x903 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

The project is designed to generate routes and landmark spaces, which give the user a logical way to read the space, making these landmark spaces a useful and significant part of the project.

The finishes are an integral part of the project, being combined in such a manner that they complement each other. The marble, carpets, stone, artificial grass, red acrylic and wood blend together creating a fusion.

The bank’s technological needs were of paramount importance to the project calling for innovative and ecological solutions to enable us to provide functionality and efficiency. One hundred percent of users have natural light in their workspaces which significantly increases productivity.

Intercam SPACE 01 600x398 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

A project of extraordinary craftsmanship, it fits the user like a tailored suit. Architectural details spring out at the user at every step. The entry of light is harmonized by the different materials achieving spaces that change with the passage of the day.

Intercam SPACE 600x903 Intercam \ SPACE

Intercam, image courtesy SPACE

+ Project facts

ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN: SPACE, Juan Carlos Baumgartner, Ana Mallon
DESIGN TEAM: Luis Monroy
FURNISHING: Haworth Permasa, Studio Roca
LOCATION: Plaza Carso Mexico City
AREA: 32,293 square feet

Week in Self \ MJÖLK Architects

Posted: 28 Sep 2012 06:37 PM PDT

MJÖLK  Architects have completed this Week in Self in CESKÉ BUDEJOVICE HOUSE OF ART (DUM UMENÍ).

06 Week in Self \ MJÖLK  Architects

Courtesy MJÖLK Architects

Lying in wait

A makeshift high seat was installed on the main square in Ceské Budejovice where it will stay for a month. It is situated high up so that it does not interfere with everyday life on the ground and offers sufficient privacy to its occupants. Over the month of the exhibition, this space with a floor area of 6.25 m2 will host several inspiring personalities, the so-called "urban hunters". They are the masters of their time and space. All the necessities needed for comfortable living are provided. The urban high seat is a continuation of our existing architectural style, starting with small-scale projects and aimed at using living space with maximum efficiency. Efficiency is not only expressed in data relating to the size of the built-up area, but also as the added value of the atmosphere present in the house and the experience had by its occupants.

291 Week in Self \ MJÖLK  Architects

Courtesy MJÖLK Architects

Neither prison nor laboratory

This project does not serve as an experiment devised to discover new scientific facts.

The aim is to provide the inhabitants with a new experience of occupying minimal space, a new urban experience. The place opens up new dimensions and perceptions for both its occupants and passers-by. It is designed to provide its residents maximum comfort within the limits of minimum dimensions.

101 600x401 Week in Self \ MJÖLK  Architects

Courtesy MJÖLK Architects

181 600x401 Week in Self \ MJÖLK  Architects

Courtesy MJÖLK Architects

Observing urban landscape

Through the sterility of space, the house occupants are yanked out of everydayness by the arrangement of space and objects. It simplifies the transition from the current semi-conscious perception of the world to full consciousness, and enhances self-awareness in relation to the surrounding space and objects within. When closed in a small but thoughtfully designed area, one can enjoy great freedom. Solitude allows concentration and pushes the limits of thinking beyond everyday experience.

35 Week in Self \ MJÖLK  Architects

Courtesy MJÖLK Architects

The object takes the virginity from the space preserved on the square for centuries and controlling the thinking of the town's inhabitants. It represents a high seat in a forest made of people, a hut on the rock formed by a paved square.

I am an urbanized hunter high up on the prowl
I spend my time doing nothing, relaxing as if I were at the cottage
I’m not in a hurry


The urban high seat is an accompanying project to the author’s exhibition of the architectural studio Mjölk Architects. In addition to several projects, the gallery, situated on the same square not far from the high seat, offers a tour of the architects' studio. For the duration of the exhibition, they moved their office and all its furnishings to the gallery all the way from Liberec, a town situated 250 kilometres from Ceské Budejovice. Visitors can thus take an inside look at the work of the Mjölk architectural studio. The architects will offer a cup of coffee, a small chat, or their services.

DATE: 6 September – 7 October 2012
OPENING: WEDNESDAY, 5 September 2012, 6.00 p.m.
House of Art Curator: Michal Škoda

Milan Kreuzzieger /philosopher/, 5 – 12 Sept
Mjölk Architects /architects/, 13 – 16 Sept
Jirí X. Doležal /journalist/, 17 – 18 Sept
Random citizen, 19 – 22 Sept
Richard Loskot /artist – this year's Jindrich Chalupecký Award finalist/, 23 – 30 Sept
Michal Škoda /artist – curator/, 30 Sept – 7 Oct

+ All images courtesy MJÖLK Architects
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Hopper, Alea, Romeo & Juliet \ Cult

Posted: 28 Sep 2012 06:09 PM PDT

Transform your backyard into a stylist retreat with Cult’s new pieces:

hopper table03 LR 600x450 Hopper, Alea, Romeo & Juliet \ Cult

Hopper, Courtesy Cult

Hopper – where beer culture meets design

Familiar yet innovative

The Hopper table, designed by Dirk Wynants, is a casebook example of the Extremis philosophy: gathering people around a piece of outdoor furniture which unites functionality and innovation. Hopper clearly bears resemblance to the traditional picnic tables everybody knows, but as is typical of Extremis… it offers extra comfort. The four 'pass through' zones make it easy to get in and out of the Hopper without having to lift your leg over the bench or disturbing your table-companions. Its slanted legs and tabletop edges are a clear reference to the hop poles that are so characteristic of the Westhoek region (where Dirk Wynants lives
and Extremis has its headquarters). If you turn around, you can use the tabletop as a comfortable backrest.

Simplicity is the best policy

The first prototype of Hopper goes back no less than almost ten years. Simplifying the original idea has taken quite some time.  Time Dirk Wynants also spent planting and growing his own hop garden. With his first harvest he brewed his very own beer and called it Tremist. There is nothing better than a local beer full of character to symbolize the link between authenticity and innovation. Or to drink a toast to yet another great tool for togetherness…

alea01 LR 600x450 Hopper, Alea, Romeo & Juliet \ Cult

Alea, Courtesy Cult

Alea – ingenuity meets flowerpot

As everyone knows, large flowerpots often look great, but they are almost impossible to move. Putting them on a rolling plant caddy might be a practical solution, but it's not really an aesthetic one. The obvious solution: Alea.

Alea consists of a frame on wheels hidden by a polyester flowerpot cover. To move the filled flowerpot, just lift the flowerpot cover 20 cm and turn it 45°. Now that the wheels are released, you can easily move the unit. To put it back at its original spot, just carry out the same operations in reverse.

romeo juliet01 LR 600x450 Hopper, Alea, Romeo & Juliet \ Cult

Romeo & Juliet, Courtesy Cult

Romeo & Juliet – romance in the city

What would you do when three young architects came up with an idea that charmed you straightaway? Help them to commercialise it of course! In 2004 Stijn Goethals, Koen Baeyens, and Basile Graux entered Romeo & Juliet for a street furniture design competition organised by the city of Kortrijk (Belgium). Their concept not only offers passersby a comfortable place to sit and relax, it also adds a touch of green to an often colourless urban or industrial setting.

The bench is made of long square strips of wood. Two round holes in the seat create room for large flowerpots containing a small tree. Just as Romeo and Juliet, the trees are destined to be together without being able to ever touch each other. The bench seems to float between the trees.

When several benches are put in line, the distance between the trees remains identical, creating architectural harmony. They are also perfectly suited to private gardens or patios.

An added bonus is the 10 cm space between the flowerpot and the flowerpot cover, to which the bench is attached. It serves as a water reservoir, but also offers the tree roots plenty of 'breathing space' to prevent them from rotting.

Oslo’s Astrup Fearnley Museum reopens

Posted: 28 Sep 2012 05:50 PM PDT

The Astrup Fearnley Museum of Contemporary Art is to reopen on 29 September in Tjuvholmen, the newest arts district of Oslo.

Arup c Nic Lehoux 600x399 Oslos Astrup Fearnley Museum reopens

Courtesy Nic Lehoux

Daylight in Norway, particularly in the winter months, is precious. With this in mind, we designed a roof system that allows as much winter sun in as possible and, through a series of layers, diffuses and redirects this light for use inside the gallery. The roof system effectively provides the opportunity for people to see more exhibits in daylight and the reduction in the use of electric lighting results in significant energy savings.

Arfon Davies, Project Director

Previously located at Dronningensgtate 4 for 18 years, the privately owned museum is now part of the new Icon Complex, developed by Selvaag Gruppen and Aspelin-Ramm Gruppen, and designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop in collaboration with Narud Stokke Wiig architects.

The new Icon Complex, part of the wider Tjuvholmen development, comprises an art museum, office building and a culture centre, all constructed on reclaimed land. The three buildings are covered by a striking double-curved roof – a design inspired by a bicycle tyre – that slopes down to touch the landscape. The roof is made up of over 2,000 unique panes of glass that allow natural light to illuminate the exhibition spaces.

Arup provided specialist lighting input for all gallery areas of the complex, with a focus on providing an integrated approach to daylight and electric lighting use. We also provided daylight design services for all areas of the project, which included the office building and the interior atrium.

To mark the reopening of the museum, an exhibition entitled "To be with art is all we ask" will be launched, featuring selected works from the Astrup Fearnley Collection.

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