Gurleen Singh Paddais, Head Interior at Elan Desgns describes the need of sustainable Architecture in the modern age.
“Architecture should speak of its time and place, but yearn for timelessness.” – Frank Gehry.
If there’s anything famous architects tried to teach us over the years, is to never underestimate the power of design. Iconic architects such as Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, or Le Corbusier became famous for their intuitive thinking, out-of-the-box approach and stunning projects but the legacies they entrust us with is far greater than that. It’s perhaps their words of wisdom that inspire us the most.
With the advent in the revolution of modern design and architecture around the world, the greatest challenge is for the Indians to adapt to such change. We come from a culturally rich background, Our way of working, cultural ethics and style of professions are usually pretty different from that of the West. Although the past decade has brought about a considerable change in the way how we prefer to work and how we look at our surroundings, while still at work. The youth of today, especially the budding entrepreneurs are of the view in working in a more dynamic environment. Such is the demand for a more interactive atmosphere and fun elements, making the working aura all the more conducive.
The current trend is hugely inspired by the vibe of infamous offices such as Facebook, Google and Microsoft being looked up to as an influence for the designs of offices and commercial buildings, one can find a distinctive element common in all of these – and that is the Dynamics of these spaces. More and more offices are being built in such fashion, where the vibes, energy and atmosphere, all speak volumes for the brand that they represent. Brand value has become one of the driving factors for every design that is illustrated in their space. The new trend these days is to portray such elements in Co- Working spaces. Fun furniture, Fluidity in design, Minimalism, and Monotone elements are the biggest giveaways in these spaces. The whole idea is to increase the productivity and yet have a de-stressing and a comforting touch to the whole atmosphere. The budding businesses have the requirement to follow a concept when it comes to designing their offices.
Colours, fragrances, patterns, and shapes all play a vital role in the productivity of human psychology. Workspaces being one of the most stressful areas, it becomes all the more necessary to bring in some zing and calm at the same time at one place. The perfect acoustics of workplace in combination with some great ambience can create a big difference in terms of making an impact on your brand, creating an image of the values and offering opportunities for the people to look forward for.
The ‘Go Green’ Wave has now been beautifully introduced in the world of design. Most commercial spaces have brought life to the décor of the offices. You can use vertical gardens, indoor pottery and desk gardens, more so, ceilings too have been considered as being great elements of aesthetics for combining greenery and décor. Not only is the atmosphere inside the office considered to be of importance when designing commercial spaces, but also, the exteriors are nowadays considered one of the impactful elements while designing the ambience of a commercial building.
Very recently I came across an article in Inc. Magazine, wherein they mentioned about 10 coolest office spaces. I have been closely following Mindvalley for a longtime now to understand life ethics and gain insight in life enriching values. So finding their office space as listed in one of those 10 is something that truly caught my eye and got me intrigued. So I studied some more into their design. Mindvalley’s office in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is something that speaks volumes of their brand. The pristine whites used across their design is a reflection of their virtues and values that they offer through their courses and sessions.
The concept of minimalism and levels created throughout their design with a touch of natural lighting and greens incorporated, have created a perfect balance of nature and corporate level working. They have followed a kaleidoscopic concept in their interiors, inspired by the stained glass in Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia church in Barcelona, Spain, the offices of personal growth education company Mindvalley use natural light to produce a kaleidoscopic effect of “coloured shadows,” painting the space in colorful hues as the sun moves through the sky.
Architecture and interior design firm Ideaworkshop increased usable space by more than 30 per cent by building split-level mezzanine platforms. The jungle-gym-like steel and glass structures lend a sense of playfulness to the space while also creating more privacy for employees. Wellness facilities include an in-office gym, hypnotherapy rooms, and bed pods for “power naps.” More than 800 plants help bring the office to life and reduce ambient noise. The quintessence of values that Mindvalley portrays has been perfectly displayed in their work culture.
Sustainability is the major issue to be taken into consideration while designing any space. While the urge to make an attractive space is always conflicting with the utility of any area, it is quite preposterous to choose one from the other. The challenge of bringing the concept, inspirations behind the identity of the brand, putting the mood board together and still being able to utilise the space to its full capacity is tricky. The incorporation of greenery into interiors has not only been a great characteristic adapted by designers worldwide, it has also been one of the most.
Another beautifully done office is that of Nicobar, a brainchild of an already existing brand Good Earth. Nicobar is driven with a philosophy of bringing culture and lifestyle together. The raw features of pure cotton and ancient folk art combined with khadi like lifestyle with some features showcasing the typical straightforward Indian essence has been clearly showcased in their Delhi office interiors. Based out of a farmhouse, the Tulsi Farm is ensembled with greenery and rustic design throughout both in their interiors and their exteriors. The casual flair with which the whole setup is being used in, quite similar to the ideology used by Google, since it being a design studio, they have kept in mind the mindset of an artist and given the liberty of using the space in such manner so as to let the artists enjoy the calhe outside and still be able to innovate on the design front.
The use of conceptualisation in terms of design and imbibing fun element has not been just limited to studios and offices, the requirements of such design elements have now become a major part in the sale of commercial buildings themselves. More and more developers have started introducing podiums that offer facilities like business centers, gyms, parks within the society and mini community centers that work as makeshift co working spaces apart from the buildings’ primary use like that of residential or commercial purposes.
The revolution of design in buildings and workspaces has been more so now than ever. But the major question is how at par are we as Indians contributing in this revolution. With every business reforming their ideology around its brand value, the interior designing and showcasing one’s brand image sure has a lot of opportunity when it comes to designing such commercial workspaces. It is now more required than ever to keep up with the ever changing trend.