A Love Letter to Nature

Interface

Dear Nature,

We didn’t always love you the way we do now. In fact for our first 21 years, we didn’t even realize how intrinsically we were connected to you. We didn’t know that our every action affects you. But then we were awakened, and we fell so deeply in love with you that others called us crazy. And our love for you transformed every aspect of ourselves – how we operate, how we make decisions – even our purpose. After all, how can a business be successful if it is harming you, the source of our life support system?

clouds in nature

Nature, do you remember the first time we came seeking your inspiration? We put aside our brash belief that we could solve every problem by ourselves, and we asked for your guidance. Admiring the beautiful and chaotic floors of your forests and meadows, we let go of our need to make every tile identical, and we embraced the untapped power of diversity. The world loved your innovative solution too.

Now here we are, decades into our love affair, and we are still learning from you—how your patterns can heal us, how your models can guide us. And we believe that reconnecting with our love for you will not only lead us to more circular systems, but also help us become healthier and more productive too. How amazing to learn that spending time with you, or in spaces designed to be evocative of you, may result in reduced stress levels, faster healing rates, and improved cognitive functioning!

room with nature light

We are finally learning from your generosity and asking ourselves what it would mean for us to be generous too. How could we contribute to spaces that facilitate wellbeing? How could our factories replenish your ecosystems? We are striving to be more like you and know we need your guidance now more than ever.

With love,
Interface

Posted in Category Biomimicry, Biophilic Design, Culture & Play | Leave a comment

Finding Work Life Balance with Color

Gretchen Wagner

Most of the time, we strive to keep our work life and our personal life separate. We carry two separate phones, we don’t answer emails after 7 pm on Friday nights and we try not to inundate our partner with the daily office happenings over pasta dinner.

The biggest exception is – my work life really cares about my personal life.

Gretchen Wagner at SCAD

Celebrating the simple pleasure of accurately mixed color and perfect gradation (le sigh).

So, from September to November last year I temporarily moved (back) to Savannah, Georgia and served as an Ambassador in Residence at my alma mater, the Savannah College of Art and Design, through the SCAD Alumni Atelier Program. Created and endowed by SCAD President and Founder, Paula Wallace, the program provides alumni with dedicated time and space to focus on expanding their creativity, all the while creating a more meaningful connection with the university.

Color dyes

Gradation of dye samples (left) and swatch materials being rinsed (right).

SCAD project

Sunny Savannah studio views of swatch material and recipes arranged according to color gradation.

During my ambassadorship, I executed a project that further examined my interest in color theory. Wheel explored the use of saturated color to create an interactive, life size color wheel constructed from nearly 500 yards of hand dyed silk. It took precision, algebra and countless bike rides back and forth to the studio to ensure its completion. The technical process in creating Wheel ultimately yielded a simple tangible shape that allowed visitors to part the panels and enter the circular color space within.

Gretchen's SCAD project

Mock up of final installation (right) and hour one of installation at Pei Ling Chan Gallery the day of the exhibition (right).

The final installation was composed of sixty silk panels each hand dyed a slightly different variation of color from one to the next, emulating the seamless color transitions in a spectrum. Wheel was exhibited alongside the work of fellow alumni ambassadors, whose specialties ranged from ceramics and furniture design, to accessory design, documentary filmmaking and screenplay writing, this past November at the Pei Ling Chan Gallery in Savannah, Georgia.

Color "Wheel" final project

Wheel, 16.5’ x 11.5’ round. installed at the Pei Ling Chan Gallery in Savannah, Georgia

My years spent at SCAD during my undergrad propelled me into my career and evolving studio practice. Returning to Savannah and creating Wheel was a tangible reminder of what the creative mind is capable of. Infinite thanks to both my SCAD and Interface families for helping make these inspired moments possible.

In other news – enjoy some process photos, color lovers.
XOXO

For more information about the SCAD Alumni Atelier, visit here.
To explore more color musings from designer Gretchen Wagner, visit Instagram or thriveordye.com.
This project was funded through the Alumni Atelier Program for Alumni Development from the Savannah College of Art and Design.
Posted in Category Design Inspirations | Leave a comment

Graffiti Art with Carpet Tile

Interface

Adventures in Color and Rhythm with Mr. June

Across the world, there are artists, designers and other creatives that leave their mark using color. Meet David Louf (aka Mr. June): a Dutch artist who started doing graffiti art in 1985 at the age of 14. Now, over 30 years later, he runs his own graphic design studio with Yves van Asten and is still fascinated by the transition between 2D and 3D. Over the years they’ve worked for a wide range of companies, including Adidas, Heineken, Sanoma and Universal music. David’s murals can be found in places like London, New York, Miami and Ibiza.

Graffiti carpet tile art
Creating a third dimension
Mr. June’s work combines geometric rhythm with fluid lines. His use of shading creates an impressive 3-dimensional effect, often interacting with the intricacies of his “canvas” – the building he is enriching with his art.

Graffiti art with carpet tile

Mr. June meets Interface
Our team in Europe was lucky to collaborate with Mr. June for the 2016 Dutch Design Week. Mr. June replaced graffiti art with carpet and created a mesmerizing pattern of shapes and colors, fitting with the “Modular Geometry” trend that references the Memphis style from the 70s. To create the piece, many carpet tiles were cut into small pieces and positioned to create an out-of-this-world appearance. The piece was installed in Broeinest, a co-working space in Eindhoven. By positioning the rug beyond the entrance of the space, the piece attracted the interest of many passers-by.

Graffiti art with carpet tile

Graffiti art with carpet tile

MrJune_Blog6_575x575 See more from Mr. June on Facebook, Instagram and his personal website.

 

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Interface moves in to Mies van der Rohe Business Park

Interface

In October 2016, Interface moved its German headquarters to the Mies van der Rohe campus in Krefeld, a textile city on the Lower Rhine. Formerly occupied by the textile company VerSeidAG, it’s the only textile industrial campus that THE famous architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe planned and built. After Mies van der Rohe’s emigration to the U.S., the architect Erich Holthoff continued the work of Mies van der Rohe and his Bauhaus architecture, building the “Alte Speditionshaus”—the former gatehouse of the area. Today, we are proud that the location serves as the new Interface showroom and office in Germany for about 40 employees.

At Interface, we believe that in order to create a living workplace, you need a place that enables people to perform well, where they can live, laugh and work. You also need a place that promotes the well-being of the employees with regard to work structures and in terms of mobility, both physically and mentally.

Our new showroom has a newly completed interior design, including lounges for refuge, meet and greet areas, meeting rooms, traditional office spaces and even cinema. Each of these spaces are based on biophilic principles, aesthetics and well-being elements. Specific collections of Interface products have been creatively combined and selected with care by the Interface design team for each zone, space and function.

Krefeld showroom entrance

The first “epicenter” is located opposite the open reception area. With organic, biophilic elements, Interface provides a contrast to the Miesian grid, which defines the light-flooded space.

Krefeld showroom lounge

The lounge is at the heart of the space but still allows you to feel secluded. The ceiling-high bookshelves separate this area from the entrance, yet have gaps to allow people to see through them. The curtain rail, adapted to the organic shape of the furniture, creates a retreat—providing a visible and noticeable contrast to the orthogonally-oriented floor plan structure and polished screed floor.

Krefeld showroom kitchen

Extending off the lounge is a counter area that ends in a small kitchen area. Here, it’s possible to talk, work or take a break and hang out. This space features a planted parapet and a waterfall, which connects the upper floor with the lower floor and helps to create an ideal climate within the office.

Krefeld showroom seating

Opposite the planted parapet is another space directly adjacent to the central area. We’re always on the move, so all of the flexible areas have power sockets to facilitate mobile working.

Krefeld showroom vertical

Natural wood, water, plants and high ceilings create a sense of space in the central vertical access area of the building. This area combines Biophilic design principles, with tangible spaces, experiential engagement, nature inside and views of the outdoors.

Krefeld showroom conference

This space is dedicated to Mies van der Rohe. Each area of the office features an inspiring, encouraging or exhorting quote from either Mies or our founder, Ray Anderson.

Krefeld showroom cinema

Featuring wall bars, the Interface home cinema is small but looks smart and invites you to climb up, descend, settle down and be inspired. Whether you’re watching the World Cup or a marketing presentation—it’s a favorite place for everyone to enjoy.

Krefeld has evolved over the centuries to become a robust industrial city with economic connections around the world, and with its abundance of Mies van der Rohe architecture, it serves as the perfect new home for Interface.

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Pantone Color of the Year 2017: Greenery

Gretchen Wagner

2017 is finally here and with it comes the long anticipated opportunity to turn over a new leaf. In keeping with traditions it is also the time to celebrate Pantone’s Color of the Year, Greenery.

Throughout all seasons, Greenery is a reminder of vitality and prosperity; youthfulness and energy.

Greenery palette

Greenery hinges on the development of well being and self care trends that have been rising to the forefront of our minds while we contemplate the differences between health and healing, the group and the individual.

Shades of green are ubiquitous in nature. You can find Greenery nestled as a pop of color among soft pastels or paired with bolder shades of jewel toned orchids in an effort to transition us out of Winter. Root Greenery with deep mineral and rust tones for the perfect earthly balance and blur man made versus nature made by bringing the outdoors inside.

Greenery carpet palette

Ultimately, Greenery is about embracing our inherent connection to nature and the beneficial qualities that we absorb when surrounded by it. So as we transition and grow into 2017, remember to breathe deeply, enjoy matcha lattes and sliced avocados, barefoot walks along moss covered trails and cultivate some greenery in that urban apartment of yours.

Check out our Green Pinterest board below. Until next year my color loving friends. XOXO.

Posted in Category Biophilic Design, Design Inspirations | Leave a comment