Contemporary art consultants, Velvenoir, shed expert light on how contemporary art can make a difference in corporate spaces. Covering the power of a bespoke art strategy in increasing productivity and creativity; the important considerations to bear in mind when investing in contemporary art, and how art consultants play a vital role within this process.
As Deutsche Bank states; art builds, art questions, art transcends borders, art works… A corporate art collection should not only be focused on investment, rather it should align with the company’s every moral and value to become part of it’s DNA. An art collection can be a powerful communication tool that speaks to clients as well as employees.
In today’s world, we are busy on a daily basis, with barely the time to relax, take a break and simply enjoy the little things in life – especially when we sit in front of a huge to-do list in offices, surrounded by equally busy colleagues in an even busier workplace. This is where art – or better still – a curated art collection, comes into play. A carefully curated art collection allows people to connect, builds engagement, and inspires them daily. Some believe design is the key, but research has shown incorporating original artwork does not only offer various ways to inspire employees, but also allows them to relax and be part of the corporate culture that the firm has to offer. In the end, the art collection should be utilised strategically to make employees feel a part of the companies DNA; even incorporating team members in the selection and installation process. This article will outline the importance of incorporating original artworks in a corporate environment and how to make the most of your art concept to benefit employees and clients alike within corporate projects.
First, it’s important to understand that art inspires creativity and leads to an increase in productivity. A curated art collection embodies the corporate value behind a firm, reflecting innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. Various surveys conducted over the years have shown that well-chosen art makes employees and their workplace feel more welcoming and also improves the individual and collective wellbeing. Doctors have even started recommending art psychotherapy to help patients explore their mental health, so it seems visiting a gallery/museum could soon replace the popularised practice of retail therapy! It’s also important to note that art is also a financial asset – even when investing in emerging and up-and-coming artists. Making the right emotional and financial investment for your projects therefore boils down to the strategy behind it, and this is where an art consultant comes in to support the selection process.
How & Where
First things first, you and your team should work in collaboration with the art consultant to establish the basic requirements of the project to align the art selection with the project brief. You should develop an overall vision and strategy for the art; an allocated budget; the desired locations / spaces in the office or building; as well as the deadline and initial ideas on how to utilise it. Once those questions have been answered, it becomes about researching local and international artists to start the selection process with your team. It is a very personal and hands-on approach in order to best source and suggests artists that reflect your vision, align with the interior design scheme, as well as convey the firm’s philosophy and overall corporate identity. Additionally, arranging artist studio meetings or inviting artists to showcase their work are all part of the process. Once the art selection is confirmed and agreed with you and your team, the acquisition process, logistics, and installation with professional art handlers are the next steps.
The final art collection can feature literally any shape, size and medium that you desire or that is required for the space; from large-scale sculptures, interactive digital art, screen prints and textiles to paintings, photography and neon art installations. In the end, it all derives from the concept behind the collection and the detailed strategy developed and implemented to communicate the end-client’s values, philosophy and passion to support the culture of the company and enhance the overall interior design. Not to mention the potential of the art increasing in value over time, making for even happier clients!
This week’s instalment of the #SBIDinspire interior design series features the Sales Center of Huahao Yalong Place; nestled at the foot of a mountain, providing distant mountain views and beautiful surrounding landscapes. The design aims to revitalise the excellence of Chinese architecture and its traditional aesthetic values by achieving ultimate refinement to present the essence of simplicity and by doing so, create innovation. The design has a soulful outlook and is an elaborate embodiment of ancient architectural values with new design approaches. From magnificence to pristine, refined beauty, from grandeur and solemnity to brightness and sensation, the integration of these values has created a harmonious spatial ambience which is, in some ways, akin to the Forbidden City located in northern China.
Company: Guangzhou Basic Design Co
Project: Sales Center of Huahao Yalong Place
Project Location: Sanya, China
What was the client’s brief?
Huahao Yalong Place covers a gross site area of around 730 Mu (equivalent to 120 acres). The project is consisted of Chinese courtyard villas, high-end apartment buildings, feature shopping arcade and five-star hotspring hotel.
What inspired the interior design of the project?
The design aims to revitalise the excellent Chinese architectural culture and the traditional aesthetic values by achieving ultimate refinement to present the essence or achieving simplicity so as to create innovative elements.
What was the toughest hurdle your team overcame during the project?
In addition to passing on the flame of civilisation, we hoped to create a design that can grant old traditions a young heroic spirit, introduce rhythms of the nature and ingenuity of the creator which stretches across thousands of miles, so that charms of the history and refinement of the art together produce magnificence and elegance of the space. Capturing and honouring the essence of this became a key challenge when producing the design concept for this project.
What was your team’s highlight of the project?
An elegant space was created under a dignified roof. The luxury temperament of the furnishings cannot be concealed by their pristine appearance. Whereas classic romance emerges from the innermost recesses of their souls, reinforcing the noble and refined lifestyle. Within the brand-new palace-like building and penthouse, there is no vicissitudes. Instead, there is a harmony of the nature as well as breath-taking scenes. In the splendid art world, there is a fascinating colourful space. Seeing this vision come together with fortitude was one of the main highlights for me.
Why did you enter the SBID International Design Awards?
Winning a SBID International Design Award is a distinguished recognition for designers. As one of the most prestigious events in the interior design industry, to enter the competition means to communicate with and be showcased to a magnitude of excellent interior designers from all over the world.
Questions answered by Zhide Liang, Chief Designer and Design Director of Guangzhou Basic Design Co
If you missed last week’s Project of the Week featuring a development project which guides the client through an inspiring and dynamic visual journey, click here to see more.
We hope you feel inspired! Let us know what inspired you #SBIDinspire
Guangzhou Basic Design Co | SBID International Design Awards 2018
This week’s instalment of the #SBIDinspire interior design series features the ultimate office design created by the workplace design and build specialists, Interaction for financial comparison company money.co.uk, transforming their unique and characterful office in The Castle, Cirencester, UK. A space where you can sneak through a secret door in a bookcase, put your feet up in a ski chalet, traipse through an ice cave, battle against suits of armour and experience a cinema in a galaxy far far away…
The work on the 10,000 sq ft project began in March 2016. There were 38 rooms to design in The Castle and for 6 of these, Interaction collaborated with designer Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, who provided initial concept sketches and a choice of finishes. An important part of creating the ultimate office meant focusing on the functionality of the workplace, designing a space that would allow the team to work effectively. Interaction explored the needs of the individuals and created a multitude of flexible work settings to enable people to work the way they want. This included creating spaces such as the ice cave, ski lodge, and ‘hightech’ room which can all be used to have informal meetings, socialise, or simply relax. This project is a perfect example of how by placing employee wellbeing at the centre of the brief and design you can use your workplace as a tool to incite a positive culture and enhance productivity, creativity and collaboration. The Castle is finally fit for the kings and queens of the tech world.
Project: money.co.uk – The Castle
Project Location:Cirencester, United Kingdom
Ranked as the UK’s 2nd fastest growing business in 2015 by The Sunday Times, financial comparison website money.co.uk needed their workplace to support this recent exponential growth. The Grade II listed Victorian ‘castle’ that money.co.uk occupied, having had no major alterations in years, did not illustrate their current standing and vision for the future.
The team therefore needed a workplace that reflected their success, but also one that continued to attract and retain talent in their competitive industry. Representing their success through their workplace was important, but at the heart of the decision for the refurbishment was rewarding staff with the best place to work.
What inspired the design of the project?
Money.co.uk’s people, in combination with Grade II listed building itself, lay at the heart of the project’s design. Not only did we want to create an environment where the team could flourish, fulfil their potential and feel happy, but we wanted to juxtapose the traditional architecture of The Castle with a contemporary finish. The unique building provides a characterful and quirky setting for an office, and the interior needed to reflect the eccentricity of the exterior.
We had to be conscious and considerate to nurture the listed building. We were excited to work with (and accentuate) several original features of the building. This included the windows, archways and some original doors – all of which have become real statement features that hark back to the rich history of The Castle.
The building continuously revealed new and hidden secrets that kept us on our feet and provided us with unique design challenges. The damp was severe – by the time we were finished we had practically re-built The Castle.
Other than successfully bringing past and present together by breathing new life into the space, the moment we held up the “snag free” board was incredible for everyone involved. As a company, we always aim to deliver our fit-out works with absolutely no snags (or defects). To achieve this on such a complex refurbishment project was a great feeling!
We knew that the SBID is highly regarded internationally and that the awards promote design excellence. We entered because we thought The Castle raised the bar in terms of office design – it has been featured in numerous news articles worldwide and has become known as one of the “world’s coolest offices”.
As well as wanting to give the project team the recognition for all of the hard work that went into the 9-month project, we were also keen to prove that workplaces can be tools for change. Rather than hindering a business, they can inspire people, promote collaboration, and increase overall productivity and output – just as The Castle has done for money.co.uk.
Questions answered by Egle Kairele, Creative Lead at Interaction
If you missed last week’s Project of the Week featuring a spectacular residence set across two buildings and garden apartment in London, click here to see more.
Interaction | SBID International Design Awards 2018
This week’s instalment of the #SBIDinspire interior design series features a workplace which intended to create more of a relationship between office spaces and architecture. Colour on the floor and walls was used to create separate working areas and multi-functional areas, while French windows at the culmination of the traffic flow channel the sunshine and green areas to the inside. A sample display area set at the rear gives users a place to meet and discuss. Here, concrete has been used on the surface to create a sense of vastness and space. Throughout the project, materials were selected for their ability to deliver the greatest impact with minimum quantities required. A bookcase brings the two floors harmoniously together; combing the upper and lower bookcases increased the connection between the two floors so that the boundaries between the floors are removed.
Company: Chain10 Architecture & Interior Design Institute
Project: TOPOSITION Construction Office
Project Location: Kaohsiung, Taiwan
TOPOSITION Construction, a subsidiary company, is affiliated with the well-known multinational waste treatment company, Cleanaway Company. The parent company’s business model is international and is dedicated to the disposal of low-pollution waste. The client has lofty moral and aesthetic standards, and the requirements for work is not only the control of costs, but also the spirit of entrepreneurship; to want to give back to the people of their hometown. They insist on setting the headquarters of the group in this small city of Gangshan District.
Geometry and vertical style designs create an extreme vision and atmosphere. Hopefully it is not only a working space, but also a space with resonance between people and bold architectural elements.
Originally, the plan is not related to the curved wall at the entrance on the exterior architecture; however, based on the idea of creating more co-ordination between the space and the architecture this became an important consideration. The original arrangement were all atrium type spaces, so how to use this to create that connection is what I needed to think about.
The curved wall at the entrance hall is created to connect the office’s entrance hall and headquarters’ lobby by using stone materials to extend interior space from outdoors. The glass wall to the curved stone wall reduces the external interference. The new stone wall extends the original arc of the building, and enhances the interest and coordination of the space.
The side entrance breaks the original pattern and makes the buffer for the original route in the space. As the original arrangement was all atrium spaces, we transform the office area into an atrium, so that there is only a difference of one floor, and you will first see the ground level before the second level. The space converges and then opens. After entering the room, you are drawn to the natural light which creates a path from start to finish; opening the originally closed walls and setting the French windows helped to create a comfortable environment for people to appreciate nature. Creating this connection between people, architecture and the environment was definitely a highlight of the project.
The Award recognises and rewards outstanding and distinguished workers and teams in the International design arena. Winning the SBID International Design Award is a great achievement and honour for global designers.
Questions answered by Keng-Fu Lo, Managing Director of Chain10 Architecture & Interior Design Institute.
If you missed last week’s Project of the Week featuring a luxurious, 1920’s style family home in South Kensington, click here to see more.
Chain10 Architecture & Interior Design Institute | SBID International Design Awards 2018
Design factors such as colour, lighting, acoustics, air quality, furnishings and architectural design can have an impact on the health, performance and engagement to those occupying the space. “Designers are masters of subliminal communication” says Michaela Jones, Director of Chroma Flooring . . . .
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