Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Living Light, living green

We were approached by CBRE’s Architecture and Design division to come up with an innovative concept for their new headquarters in Henrietta Place, London. As part of the brief, we included an interpretation of their early stage brand phrase, ‘living green.’ This phrase became a trigger for one of our concepts, which was to make the building as a whole feel like a sensory experience with the integration of innovative lighting, sculptural and audio visual applications, as though the building itself was alive (living green).

On the ground floor, one of the principal innovative lighting features was the installation of an art-based structure (utilising Philips iColour tiles technology), which allowed abstract, large format video to be displayed within a sculptural lighting installation. These were housed in the reception area and became a real talking point with visitors due to their abstract, almost hypnotic quality and were one of the first of their kind to be installed anywhere in the UK. You can see a short video of them in action here:

This is also now featured on the Philips Lighting Youtube channel.

From a textural/sculptural aspect we created a wave graphic that was applied to interior windows and interpreted around the wall surfaces. We used large format three dimensional tiles that reinforced the ‘living’ concept as well as adding an element of boutique style and sophistication. The tiles were carried through the ground floor break out area, working in tandem with LED floor lighting. This enabled the whole wall to change colour so that CBRE could change the mood of the area from a cool business environment to one suited to client entertainment, when the area took on a more exclusive bar-like quality.

We also proposed installing a large format LED display for the lower ground floor CBar area (4metres x 2.5 metres). The flexibility of this technology would enable CBRE to either create the effect of an abstract moving wall of light or again change the mood to display cinema sized film or video for entertaining staff or clients. In the interim, CBRE has installed a projector, housed in the ceiling, which acts in the same way but without the luminosity and visual impact of the LED mesh.

Throughout the six month project we were also involved in a consultancy and project management role, advising on other aspects of the interior, from signage and wayfinding to colour coding and imagery.

The finished building provides a stylish, innovative and modern corporate headquarters that not only reflects the gravitas that one would expect from one of the world’s largest global real estate organisations, but the inventiveness, energy and dynamism of the CBRE brand and its employees.

update: Estates Gazette has a video feature on the new space, watch it here:

(click on any of the images above or below to view full size)

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