Every office needs a space that reflects its own ideations, its growing sensibility — a space that captures the essence of its principles. To this end, Space Architects’ core ideas, notions of journey, spatial experience and interior transition, are all present in the design of their own basement office in New Delhi. It is conceived as an ambience conveyed through light tones, abstract treatments, lighting and furniture.
The fresh, modern fit out of the office seamlessly aligns with the conceptual idea of its inhabitants. The architects have worked out to provide a sense of space and volume to the small-scale project of 1500 sq-ft, with detailing. The volume expounds on five interlocking but distinct functions - the reception, main workspace including the cabins, conference area, a discussion area and a breakout space - each combined with a strong internal quality.
The sense of orientation and arrival speaks of a frank aesthetics with foremost display of projects executed by the firm on a cement-finished gallery wall. In order to emphasise on the various design elements the flooring, on this level, has been muted to the grey of concrete. The design unfolds as the reception area then spills into the green breakout zone, defined by its elliptical lounge, green flooring and abstract ceiling. Two workstations for senior architects are located behind the seating.
An intimate yet open meeting zone that is alienated from the main workstations is raised on a platform, drawing its focal attention to the table, formulated inventively with the basic componentry of steel pipes of different diameter. An additional abstract element added to define the isolation of this area is the ceiling that extends into multiple boxes displaying different design ideologies of the firm.
Shedding light on the animated ceiling that works as the signature statement throughout the office, the architects say, “The ceiling plays an important role in the studio to create a visual transition. As the ceiling near the reception displays a journey of the firm through its projects, similarly, the elliptical ceiling right above it has a hanging model inspired by a thesis project. The circular seating in green area is reflected on the ceiling in an abstract pattern that’s continues to the rear space.”
The conference room, tucked away to the right of the breakout zone, is wrapped with transparent partitions and embodies abstruse forms in its furniture and wall treatment. Adjacent to this is the main cabin, separated by a fluid veneer-cladded partition that is inclined on both sides and also spans into the conference room ceiling. The two spaces have been formulated to merge in to act as one when necessary by simply pulling back the glass partition.
Falling out in the lower level is an open work studio connected via cantilevered wooden steps. The design of this area visually and physically expands the compact space to a capacious work zone. In contrast to the upper level, the lower level is awash in white to bring in the sense of space.
While the plan capitalises on the natural light permeating in through the glass roof at the entrance, the transforming gradation of light are enhanced by apt artificial lighting.
The office design establishes a sense of discovery, expressed through dynamic furnishing and surface treatment. To give the space a creative edge, the interior plays on many juxtaposing layers with artificial light and abstruse surfaces. The employment of a visual palette heightens the spatial sensibility.
The office evolves as an exploration that investigates dynamism in form, colour and detail. Subtle designs mediums are used to present the studios work, with a balance of materials, providing an honest interior that does not overpower the design ethos of the firm. Perfectly offsetting an exploratory dialogue, the Spaces Architects’ workspace is an exemplary notion on how the designers can connect to the sense of being one with their own work.
- Designing within the restraint of a narrow rectangular site with a wide front lane and buildings on either sides.
- The space was 1.2 meters below the ground level.
- The skewed volume of the space was another challenge the architects faced. As shown in the plan, the space is narrow at the front and broader at the rear. It also has a further split level below one meter from the upper level.
- Thus, the major task for the architects was to introduce ample natural light and ventilation along with providing visual connectivity between the outdoor and indoor and also within the space.
Project: Spaces Architects@ka Studio
Location: New Delhi, India
Client: Kapil Aggarwal
Architect: Kapil Aggarwal
Design team: Kapil Aggarwal, Pawan Sharma, Karan Arora, Chander Mohan Kaushik
Project area: 1500 sq-ft
Carpentry contractor: Manoj Carpenters
Duration of project: 4 months