Posts tagged with "Steelcase":

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The MIT Self-Assembly Lab prints squishy, tactile lighting fixtures

The MIT Self-Assembly Lab and Swiss designer Christophe Guberan have unveiled a range of new lighting and household items that are 3D-printed in soft materials and then inflated to their proper sizes. Liquid to Air: Pneumatic Objects is currently on display at the Patrick Parrish Gallery at 50 Lispenard Street in Manhattan through August 26. The Self-Assembly Lab team, consisting of Björn Sparrman, Schendy Kernizan, Jared Laucks, and Skylar Tibbits, were able to “draw” the malleable objects using rapid liquid printing. The experimental process is a collaboration between the lab and furniture company Steelcase and can be used to rapidly print large-scale products in a variety of materials. Prints are “drawn” in a vat of gel using a variety of extruded materials–everything from rubber to plastic–that only stick to themselves and not the gel. The prints are limited only by the size of the container holding them, don’t require supports, and can contain variable thicknesses within a single object, representing a huge leap forward for 3D printing technology. For Liquid to Air, the team printed table lamps, pendants, and sconces from silicone rubber and inflated them into round, buoyant fixtures with a malleable finish. Walking through Patrick Parrish Gallery, visitors are encouraged to touch the final products, which also include multi-chambered vessels used as vases and holders for stationery. A hands-on exploration reveals that everything is soft to the touch and rebounds after squeezing, demonstrating the potential of rapid liquid printing to create complex but durable objects. Liquid to Air isn’t the first collaboration between the Self-Assembly Lab and Guberan. The team has worked together since 2014, and last year they printed a series of mesh handbags and lighting fixtures for Design Miami 2017 and used rapid liquid printing to churn out unique pieces in a matter of minutes.
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Product> Design Diagnosis: 12 of the best new healthcare furnishings

With the rise of evidence-based design, comfortable spaces are eclipsing clinical environments in healthcare facilities. These new products satisfy both the aesthetic and performance demands of the medical community. Regard Nurture by Steelcase This system of waiting-area furniture is designed to adapt to a wide variety of spaces, and has features—flexible power locations, integrated tables, privacy booths—that allow people to connect or retreat. True Wood Rite Door Assa Abloy/Adams Rite Dual levers inset on either side of the door activate the top latching mechanism, allowing each leaf to function on its own, doing away with additional parts such as floor strikes, center latches, flush bolts, astragals, and coordinators. Dart Designtex This woven upholstery has a finish that provides high-level stain resistance and limited bleach cleanability. The patterned textile is offered in nine colorways. Flop Sofa, Palisade Collection Nemschoff For round-the-clock use, this sofa converts to a sleeper simply by adjusting the back cushion; there is no finger-pinching, heavy mechanism to maneuver. Lighting and power ports options. Designed by Jess Sorel. ICU 300 Dorma With single, bi-parting, or telescopic operation, these manual sliding doors allow for continuous observation of patients while providing quick and easy access in emergency situations. Programma 400 ALU pba This full collection of grab bars, shower seats, and other bathroom accessories is fabricated of anodized aluminum with nylon elements. Collective Time Shaw In tiles and broadloom, this carpeting collection takes design cues from circadian rhythms, translating data into color and texture patterns. Lifetime commercial warranty; Cradle-to-Cradle Silver certified. VitalSign 2/90 Sign Systems This signage system relies on a magnetic tool—instead of human hands—to change medical alerts and icons, reducing the transmission of infectious disease in healthcare facilities. ProLine Drain Quick Drain USA Fabricated of 304 stainless steel and measuring 1.5 inches wide, this linear drain features an integrated flange, easing the installation of barrier-free showers. A sloped interior trench eliminates standing water in the drain. Color Select USAI Lighting The first architectural LED downlighting fixture to offer independent control of both color temperature and intensity, this technology effectively mimics natural daylight and satisfies the needs of healthcare workers and patients alike. Plus System Pressalit Horizontal and vertical wall tracks and brackets allow bathroom fixtures to be repositioned as needed, with ease and precision. Fabricated of strong, lightweight aluminum and polystyrene, lifts are offered with a choice of manual, pneumatic, and electric power. Corning Med-X Glass McGrory Glass The high barium and lead content of this glass is designed to shield against 80-300kV X-rays while providing an optically neutral appearance. With plates measuring up to 54 inches by 108 inches, it maximizes views for medical technicians.
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Product> Contract Furnishings & Materials: Six picks from this year’s NeoCon

As thinking on workplace design continues to evolve—should we stand or sit? Collaborate or isolate? Specialize or multi-task?—the need for comfortable, well organized, and aesthetic environments remains unquestioned. Here are a few items from NeoCon 2014 that caught our attention. Soto II Tools Steelcase A collection of multi-functional organizers leverages the limited desktop space of the modern office. Includes monitor bridge, shelves, and USB hub. Dance 3Form Bent wire courses across the interlayer of this resin panel, part of the new Full Circle collection. Handcrafted by artisans in Senegal. Overlay, Nexus Collection Knoll Textiles Despite its textured appearance, this pattern is a flat print. The design was developed using hand-modified, randomizing software. In eight colorways; 54-inch repeat. Designed by Kari Pei. Breaking Form Mohawk Group Tessellated geometric patterns that can be configured in numerous ways are offered in a durable nylon 12-inch-by-36-inch plank format. Designed by Mac Stopa, Massive Design. M4 Executive Chair Sokoa Back, seat, and headrest are 100-percent mesh, providing a responsive, custom seating experience. Also offered in manager, operator, and conference models. Designed in collaboration with Martin Ballendat. IN FORm AV Video Conferencing Suite Innovant This portable, self-contained set-up affords efficient installation of video conferencing facilities, particularly in open-plan locations. Power cables run inside the legs of the tables.
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Product > Finds from the Floor at NeoCon 2013

Nearly 42,000 architects, interior designers, facilities planners, furniture dealers, and distributors converged on NeoCon, the A&D industry's largest exhibition of office, residential, health care, hospitality, institutional, and government design products. Held from June 10–12, the show included education components and keynote presentations from Bjarke Ingels, founder of BIG; Michael Vanderbyl, principal of Vanderbyl Design; Holly Hunt, president & CEO of Holly Hunt; and Lauren Rottet, interior architect and founder of Rottet Studio. AN was present to cover a handful of educational seminars and sessions (see our live tweets from Ingels's presentation on our Twitter feed), and we scoured the showrooms in search of 2013's new product trends. Following are a few we saw at the show. COLOR Manufacturers touted a vibrant range of colors across their new product collections. Some say this is indicative of a sustainable economic upturn, while others are just sick of playing it safe. The Us Family American Seating Company A collection of adaptable seating and tables for education environments from American Seating Company was designed with the help of color expert Laura Guido-Clark. As an expert in the color, material, and finish of consumer products, she helped select a palette of 15 colors and 450 fabric options in colorways that improve the learning environment. Eames Molded Fiberglass Side Chair Herman Miller Thanks to advances in sustainable manufacturing technology, Herman Miller reintroduced the molded plastic Arm and Side chairs in fiberglass. A reformulation of the collection's color pigments have also facilitated a commitment to the original nine color options envisioned by the Eameses. Both models are available with a wire, dowel, four leg, stackable, or rocking base. Soon KnollTextiles The Alejandro Cardenas–designed collection of bright colors and graphic patterns was inspired by a song from one of the designer's favorite bands: My Bloody Valentine. The song's rhythm was translated to texture on a textile of 100 percent cotton. The collection exceeds 60,000 Wyzenbeek rubs. PARAMETRICS Design complexities are increasingly achieved via digital design and fabrication methods, and that trend was very much present at NeoCon this year. From furniture to finishings, parametric design visuals were everywhere—and not only in the abundance of hexagonal designs we saw on each floor of the Mart. Off the Wall Mohawk Group Street art finds its way to interior finishes with Off the Wall, a pattern from artist Aakash Nhihalani, who uses neon painter's tape to create illusions of depth in urban environments. These dimensions were translated algorithmically to a linear pattern in Off the Wall, part of the Street Thread Collection, and can be reconfigured to suggest way finding, define an area within a room, or recreate classic textile patterns. Hexagon Shaw Contract Group Bold portrayal of the hexagonal trend was exhibited in Shaw Contract's aptly named carpet tile collection. Developed in collaboration with Chris Heard and Stephen Wells of Atlanta-based design firm Hendricks; John Peterson of Public Architecture; and Michael Murphy of MASS Design Group, six-sided geometric patterns are generatively configured across each tile to continue the pattern in any direction. Cliffy 6000 SIXINCH At nearly 20 feet in length, the curvilinear Cliffy 6000 is part of SIXINCH's U.S. debut of contract-ready, three-step foam-coated furniture. Designed by Rainer Mutsch, repeating sections of the bench curve smoothly along both planes for back-supported seating, lounging, and perching. MATERIAL RESPONSIBILITY Sustainability commitments are not the differentiating factor they once were but manufacturers went beyond predictable promises with their 2013 product launches. In addition to the burgeoning use of rapidly renewable materials, companies looked beyond land masses and focused on preserving the ocean's ecosystems. Blazer Camira Available in 60 new shades, Blazer is made with Laneve-branded wool that features a trace code to identify the material's source in New Zealand. For every yard purchased, Camira donates to the New Zealand Whale and Dolphin Trust to help protect the endangered Hector's Dolphin population off the nation's Banks Peninsula. 2013 Collection with TerraStrand Chilewich Chilewich has substituted petroleum-based plasticizers for TerraStrand, a phthalate-free fiber made from renewable vegetable compounds. Combined with its PVC-free BioFelt backing system, Chilewich products now boast lower greenhouse gas emissions and a lower carbon footprint than traditional vinyl products. Net Effect Interface Designed by David Oakey to convey the movement of water, the yarn fluff on both 20-square-inch tiles and 10- by 40-inch planks is made of 100 percent recycled content from Interface's ReEntry program. Carpet fibers will eventually constructed from nets gathered from the Net-Works project, a joint venture in the Danajon Bank area of the Philippines with the Zoological Society of London that collects and repurposes the discarded fishing nets from some of the world's poorest fishing communities. TECHNOLOGY INTEGRATION The effect technology has had on the workplace is undeniable. The ability to work anywhere at any time has changed not only the way we work but where we work and the new corporate environment accommodates everything from advanced integration to stylish simplicity. Bluescape Haworth Developed with Obscura Digital, Bluescape is a cloud-based software and surface that can be accessed on multi-panel high definition touch screens, laptops, and mobile devices simultaneously from anywhere in the world. More than 160 acres of visual data can be stored within the system and does not require a WiFi signal to function across long distances. Element Desk Moser Contract Taking a low-tech approach to workplace technology integration, Adam Rogers's design for the Element desk's classic lines are uninterrupted by cord management strategies. Made from solid, domestically sourced hardwood, hollowed desk legs hide desktop wires and a keyboard drawer with a collapsible front conceals multiple power and data ports. V.I.A. Steelcase Vertical Intelligent Architecture, or V.I.A., makes use of the most underutilized real estate in the office: the walls. Video conferencing capabilities, writable and tackable surfaces, multiple display screens, and acoustical privacy are integrated into a modular system of walls that can be reconfigured and adapted to automatically meet the way people work with embedded sensors, activators, and microprocessors.
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Trendspotting at Neocon

As North America’s largest interior design conference, Neocon is a great place to scout interiors trends. Here are a couple themes AN spotted during this year’s opening days. Video conference calls are an integral part of day-to-day office work for a growing share of businesses. Elegant office design and high-tech compatibility seemed to dovetail in many of the new products on display at Neocon. Steelcase’s media:scape software plugs into a new mobile monitor stand and whiteboard from Coalesse designed to integrate high-tech furnishings into clean, open plan office design. Workware from Haworth strikes a similar balance, stashing media connections and electrical outlets inside sleek media wells that are a welcome departure from plastic, flip-top openings on the conference room floor. Nucraft’s Passport won a gold award for conference room furniture. Media displays track smoothly across a bowed panel of whiteboards, opening up conference table sessions to customization without compromising the clean, high-design office aesthetic. The products merge software and hardware solutions for virtually hands-free high-tech conference capability. Elsewhere in Neocon, we saw our floors come alive. Mohawk Group tried to strike a balance between custom-order textiles and off-the-shelf products with a collection of DIY-inspired patterns. An organic color palette undulates across the catalog of modular tiles. Transitional tiles are designed to let customers create larger patterns themselves at a price point far below a traditional custom order. Camira makes fabric from UK-grown-hemp and wool, as well as recycled polyester. The result is a wide swath of colors with a reduced environmental footprint. Green flooring was a common thread among this year’s fabricators. Interface’s Urban Retreat gracefully incorporated the warm glow of moss on cement into its sustainable flooring. And we continued to tread lightly on natural resources with Chilewich's BioFelt tile, which is Velcro-anchored and PVC-free.
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Shimoda Design’s Steelcase Showroom: Formglas

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Molded gypsum shapes a Chicago Merchandise Mart space.

The Steelcase Worklife Center is one of the Chicago Merchandise Mart’s largest showrooms, spanning 45,000 square feet and encompassing four areas displaying the furniture manufacturers’ various brands. The company hired Los Angeles-based architect Joey Shimoda, who also designed the Steelcase center in Santa Monica, to create interiors that would unify the showroom with the common corridor bisecting it. After reading about a project by molded gypsum, concrete, and fiberglass fabricator Formglas in a magazine, he called the company and was on a plane to its Toronto headquarters the next day to discuss a series of geometric architectural elements he envisioned for the space.
  • Fabricator Formglas
  • Architect Shimoda Design
  • Location Chicago, Illinois
  • Status Complete
  • Material Glass fiber reinforced gypsum
  • Process 5-axis CNC mill, molding
“We knew that cast gypsum would be a good way to do this,” said Shimoda. Glass fiber reinforced gypsum (GRG) is a white, thin-cast alpha gypsum that is preferable to traditional plaster castings because of its light weight, high strength, and easy installation. The team began to work on three main architectural elements for the showroom. Because an undulating glass wall would separate the Center from the corridor, Shimoda wanted to draw visitors to the storefront with a row of totems—elliptical column covers in a pattern of stretched and compressed facets. The second element, called The Body, would be a veiled enclosure to shelter the showroom’s cafe, bar, and presentation room from the rest of the space. The third feature, born of necessity, was a screen over the return air louver for the Mart’s exhaust system, which necessitated a pattern with 70 percent perforation. Entitled The Body, a feature wall, encloses a cafe (Shimoda Design) The team collaborated with Steelcase's vice president of global design James Ludwig to create each element’s pattern. The goal was to create a large number of design possibilities by using one shape as a starting point and manipulating it to achieve multiple forms. Shimoda and the Formglas team produced computer files in Rhino and CATIA. Using a laser scan of the existing structural elements along with site measurements, they accounted for space constraints. The finished forms were divided into segments that would allow for them to be transported to the showroom and installed there. Using the computer models, Formglas used a 5-axis CNC mill to manufacture molds for each shape. Each of the twelve column designs is approximately ten feet high and is constructed from eight pieces with a range of elliptical geometries supported by wood reinforcing ribs. Saw-tooth overlap joints allow the column cap and base to fit together smoothly; joints were caulked, sanded, and painted on site. The Body feature wall went through several iterations. The first, a series of horizontal ribs with integrated LEDs, was not in Formglas’ scope of work, but they agreed to take on a modified design later in the project. The double-sided grille is created by a varied vertical diamond pattern, creating a semi-opaque enclosure around banquette seating. The grille design is made up of horizontally intersecting curved ribs that create diamond-shaped openings. Formglas experimented with fusing individual components in the mold, allowing for a faster construction process and easier assembly. While the mechanical portion is open, additional sections are backed with drywall. The wall is painted grey, creating a functional design element that connects all of the Steelcase space, visible through its glass walls, along the corridor. In total Formglas fabricated approximately 1,000 parts for the space over the course of three months.
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High Tech Holidays

The Chicago office of SOM has designed a modern take on the menorah, which recently took top prize in a charity competition sponsored by Steelcase. The solid wax menorah, which was created by Colin Gorsuch, burns so that the eight inch square frame is revealed with the passing of each night of Chanukkah. The melting wax "falls onto the wooden base and paints a pictorial timeline of the Hanukkah celebration," according to a statement from the firm. SOM's Adrian McDermott designed a wreath for the competition, formed out of 80 overlapping toruses that create a lattice ring.