Verdant Spine Office Office by Studio Sklim

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DESIGN DETAILS
DESIGN NAME:
Verdant Spine Office

PRIMARY FUNCTION:
Office

INSPIRATION:
We believe in merging flora with the office environment to provide a balance between mentally demanding work and spaces that provide visual relief. The creation of this verdant spine manages the different work flows of the modern compact office by defining work zones and circulations while accommodating pockets of wild nature. We silently hope the plants will eventually take over the pockets and spread on the surfaces they now inhabit, creating a truly biophilic work environment.

UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
A verdant spine anchors the spatial organisation of an office inspired by both natural landforms and vernacular forms/materials. The spatial organisation is anchored by a linear architectural datum which incorporates storage, shelving, printing station, a meeting niche and an overhanging spine of flora. The aesthetics of the greenery draws inspiration from the tropical rainforest and was intentionally designed to be on the wild side, reflective of the flora in this region.

OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
This office uses an elongated arching planter as an architectural datum to distinguish between the more private working spheres from the public circulation. This spine gathers all the necessary storage and printing needs by compacting them into a single element, placing them in close proximity to each respective work sphere thus enabling an efficient workflow eg: the storage shelves for the admin staff are placed within an arm's length. The office design considers the specific needs of this profession and provides a level of privacy without sacrificing open communication by having both individual offices and work cubicles. While greenwalls are all the rage especially in Singapore, the architects have tried to steer away by introducing their own take on 'junglefication' by envisioning a tropical jungle setting for the flora pockets. While visually comforting for an intense work environment, the placement of these pockets were strategic as they adhere to 'Feng Shui' principles -a traditional method of space organisation practised in Chinese communities. The architects believe that even a compact workspace for one of the more intense professions can be a pleasant environment infused with lush tropical greenery and a touch of the vernacular materiality/context.

PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
The project started in October 2018 in Singapore and was completed in January 2019.

FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Interior Space and Exhibition Design

PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
The elements of craft are evident in this project. The meeting table, working cubicles/desks for the staff/director and even the door handles have been customised so they coordinate with the overall visual branding of the office. The ‘’landform’’ aspect of the design takes on a rough textured stucco finish while the architectural components are addressed in the rattan canopy structure of the meeting room and mini-privacy canopies for the work cubicles. The meeting room is an abstract of the vernacular communal longhouse. The overhanging 3m long rattan canopy was designed in tandem with the meeting table to mirror each other in dimension and 2-dimensional geometry. Laser-cut felt pieces from leafy abstracts were custom fabricated to provide a softer acoustical cocoon for a meeting niche and cosy break-out area.

SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
135 square metres in floor area

TAGS:
Office, Biophilic, Greenery, Textured Stucco, Rattan, Verdant Spine, Material Sensitivity, Craftmanship

RESEARCH ABSTRACT:
We were working with rattan craftsmen to understand the limits and opportunities of the material. To construct a self supporting 3m long and 1m wide overhanging structure was not an easy task and highly dependent on the diameter of the primary structural rattan rods and the method they are being lashed together with split rattan twine. Curvature was achieved by heating the rattan rods with a heat gun and letting them cool under a vice with clamps.

CHALLENGE:
The challenge in this project was the tight 1 month production time on site. We had to spilt the production into a few fabricators and contractors, and move production into the factories off site. The main carpentry and works was done in Singapore but the rattan was fabricated in Johor, Malaysia and the furniture metal works were fabricated in Kedah, Malaysia. Organisation of these different trades in different locations had to be timely to avoid any loss of waiting time as each of them was reliant upon the next for the total completion of the job, for example the meeting table legs had to be completed before carpentry could finish the table top and carpentry had to be after the installation of the overhanging rattan to avoid any potential accidents.

ADDED DATE:
2019-03-15 05:41:50

TEAM MEMBERS (2) :
Kevin Lim and Ashwin Bafna

IMAGE CREDITS:
Image #1: Khoo Guojie, Verdant spine with meeting niche flanked by row of storage with built-in planters, 2019
Image #2: Khoo Guojie, Panoramic contrast of dark meeting room and light office area, 2019
Image #3: Khoo Guojie, Rattan canopy hovering over meeting table, 2019
Image #4: Khoo Guojie, Meeting niche covered with laser-cut felt pieces inspired by leafy foliage, 2019
Image #5: Khoo Guojie, Work cubicles against curved form of verdant spine, 2019

Visit the following page to learn more: http://sklim.com/
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CLIENT/STUDIO/BRAND DETAILS
NAME:
Studio SKLIM

PROFILE:
Studio SKLIM is an international design agency crafting bespoke spatial solutions. Studio SKLIM firmly believes that design opportunities are inherent, waiting to be unleashed or given a new perspective. The organisation of “raw materials” not limited to the form of environmental data, typographical conditions, cultural peculiarities and technological limits form a new ground from which our design process initiates these extractions. Our fast changing contemporary life demands a rethink and reorganisation of existing spatial parameters, therefore making conceptual clarity and contemporary investigative research instrumental to the design process of our work. Our design ethos feeds on these rigors. From banality breeds creativity and each project stems from its own unique set of pragmatics and constraints. We believe that the most basic of design solutions are intrinsically able to conjure the most complex relationships with the environment. We embark on design journeys with our consultants and clients, as a collective experience to explore market demands, environment sustainability, design technology and socio-cultural landscapes with the hope of creating built environments that resonate with our shared positions.

NOMINATION DETAILS

Verdant Spine Office Office by Studio Sklim is a Nominee in Interior Space and Exhibition Design Category.

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AWARD DETAILS

Verdant Spine Office Office by Studio Sklim is Winner in Interior Space and Exhibition Design Category, 2018 - 2019.



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