Security Sat a 2015 Design Is…Award Market Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Market-Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Pablo Redondo addresses the design process for Security Sat in Santiago, Chile.

Describe this project in one word. Interaction.

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?Beauty as we understand it, is a complex and unique state of shapes and language. It is also a pleasant state of mind and that’s how design can impact a space user. It gives a state of beauty.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey. Our journey begins in the understanding of the client – and the client’s objective. Concepts can be difficult to translate to other minds, so it is very important to understand how to relate to and find the correct visual language. Next, we identify practices or non-practices that separate the user from the identified goal. Proposal is the key to unlock resistance and uncertainty. This is very important to understand the client language – and being able to communicate solutions and added value.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow?  I believe the most important factor in the design process is to focus on the client instead of ourselves as designers. We will be understood as long as we speak so they will understand. Communication is the key and it is our responsibility.

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Mesa Community College a 2015 Design Is…Award Market Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Market-Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Here, Maria Salenger addresses the design process for Mesa Community College in Mesa, AZ.

Describe this project in one word. Rhythmic.

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?The architecture is spacious and energetic to give artists a flexible and inspiring place to be creative collaboratively.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey.  Collecting the unique aspirations and needs of the college, we developed the project’s quantitative and qualitative aspects closely with our consultant team and user group. The design process of performing arts space is an enlightening experience no matter how many projects you have already completed.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow? Listen to and trust in the vision of your client.

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King Edward Hotel Model Room a 2015 Design is…Award Market Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Market-Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

Katie Weber shared insight from this design process with us.

Describe this project in one word. Luxurious.

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?Great design is like chemistry: we mix elements, textures and colours in an effort to elicit a physical response from, in this case, the hotel guest. Understanding that the King Edward hotel is Toronto’s first luxury hotel, we endeavored to immerse the guest in timeless elegance that creates a sense of calm but is at the same time, dynamic.

Design is a process. Explain your journey. At MDAI we embrace and incorporate a property’s unique qualities – creating spaces that look forward while giving a subtle nod to the past.

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow? There is a tendency to want to put a modern face on a property when doing a full renovation. We’ve learned that rather than masking the character, you should embrace it; that’s where the interest lies.

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Somerset House a 2015 Design Is..Award Market Winner

Shaw Contract Group conducted interviews with all firms representing Market-Award winning projects from the 2015 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn more about the winning projects.  These are their stories.

David Skeels spoke with us about the design journey for this project.

Describe this project in one word. Renaissance.

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How does this project demonstrate how design can impact users in a space?Design is not always obvious. It is often what has been rationalised and omitted rather than what has been added and flaunted. A simple walk through Somerset House will expose you to the Arts – performance, culture, product, literature, photography, to food, people, light, and spatial curiosity through the various modern interventions now crafted into the structure. Somerset House cannot be described merely as ‘a building’. Part of it being Nelson’s home and historic administration base, it is now essentially an all public access inner sanctum, a village in the heart of the City enabling work and pleasure to cohabit in one unique environment.

Our approach was not one of historic reinstatement.  As modernists, we sought to rationalise, excite and interject where appropriate, to ensure Somerset House continues to reflect history of yesterday and today and extending these spaces into the 21st century. Of its time, the interior spaces reflect the elevational order, controlling spatial status from ground to third floor.Our aim was three fold:

  1. To return derelict historical spaces to profitable use.
  2. To enable public access through deft co-joining of the historically purposeful composition of dwellings, community spaces, function rooms, workshops, workspaces, retail and art chambers.
  3. To support the Arts and Creative movements.

Derelict spaces found at upper levels comprised roof voids with large timber supporting structures, ostensibly unusable. We adapted these to suit SME businesses and to provide inspiring creative units with good daylight and views of the river or public courtyard.

At mid levels, interior spaces vary with well proportioned rooms with large windows.  Also with excellent views, these are generally used for business units, functions and gatherings.

Ground floor spaces are open to public access. These are large, tall spaces containing access points for tenants, galleries and restaurant spaces with internal corridors of stairs, light-wells and lifts. We adapted these so daylight penetrates from roof to ground and our subtle re-alignment of cores, stairs and lifts clarify and simplify internal circulation.

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Design is a process. Explain your journey. The process is one of research, history, heart searching, and of negotiating and aligning modern commercial demands over autocratic regulation. We had to consider how to respect the listed architecture and at the same how to satisfy the need to make the property financially viable on a self funding basis. Essentially this was a journey of teasing out the great and the few not so great elements of the historic work, aligning modern design with respect to structural order all whilst fighting a budget. This was not a journey of evolving one single concept. We had to deal with each space and each opportunity as an individual project, with a seamless detail approach throughout.

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What are the most important lessons you’ve learned through this project that you’d want to share with the designers of tomorrow? It is as important to have a great team of fellow design consultants as it is to listen to your client and your specialists. There is always a solution. It may take a long time to arrive at that point, but if you follow the train of thought already laid before you, the solution will emerge. You will feel it within when it is right. Where interjections are to be made on great existing works, it is important to justify in your mind what elements are not so good and how any new intervention you propose will complement any previous work. At the same time, it is also essential to be bold and to offer something of intellectual value.

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MoMA’s COSMO purifies water + powers summer music series

Calling all art lovers, music lovers and Earth lovers:

The MoMA PS1 gallery (dedicated to experimental art) now features an outdoor installation that mechanically uses plants and customized irrigation concepts to filter and purify 3,000 gallons of water, which, once purified, signals the device to glow at its center – providing pulsating light for Warm Up, the gallery’s summer concert series in Long Island City.

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Designed by Andres Jacques/Office for Political Innovation, the concept was realized through the MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program, which spotlights emerging firms doing experimental work.

Learn more about the program and COSMO’s sustainable design in this article on azuremagazine.com

 

 

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