Architonic Newsletter 11.2012


Dear Readers,

The recent Orgatec fair proved once more that there's a new office-furniture typology on the block, which has its roots in George Nelson's 1960s and 70s workplace designs. We're calling examples of it 'In-Betweeners'.
And a new project went live this month - the Designboom Product Library, which lies at the heart of a strategic alliance between Designboom and Architonic. Find out more below.

Here's a brief overview of the contents of our November newsletter:

  • Agenda December 2012 & January 2013
  • The In-Betweeners: the rise of a new office-furniture typology
  • Architonic and Designboom launch strategic alliance
  • Architonic Products & Materials: Inspiring Search Results N° 11
  • Architonic Architecture & Design: Inspiring Spaces N° 4
  • The Most Recent Projects From Our 'Architecture & Design' Library

Go get inspired!

Your Architonic Team

Zurich | Milan | Barcelona | Berlin | Cologne | Copenhagen | Stockholm | London


George Nelson’s free-standing conference-room element from his 1970s ‘Workspaces’ programme, which adumbrated the current trend for space-defining office systems. (Image taken from ‘George Nelson: The Design of Modern Design', MIT Press, 2008)



Agenda December 2012 & January 2013


Istanbul Design Biennial
13 October - 12 December 2012

Blickfang 2012, Zurich
23 - 25 November 2012 (Kongresshaus)

Frame Moooi Award 2013 Submission Deadline
1 December 2012

Heimtextil, Frankfurt
9 - 12 January 2013

DOMOTEX, Hannover
12 - 15 January

Passagen, Cologne
13 - 19 January 2013

imm cologne
14 – 20 January 2013

BAU, Munich
14 - 19 January 2013

Maison & Objet, Paris
18 - 22 January 2013

INTERIORS UK, Birmingham
20 - 23 January 2013

5 - 9 February 2013

The In-Betweeners: the rise of a new office-furniture typology


In the grand, teleological narrative of design, things are developed to make our lives increasingly better. New forms, materials and technological innovations are introduced, self-justifying, attended by a clarity of function and value. But what happens when a new design typology comes into being for which there isn’t even a consensus on how to describe it? We give you the ‘In-Betweeners’ – a new series of office-furniture systems that are neither fish nor fowl.


Designed for Loook Industries, and conceived specifically for open-plan and public spaces, Kevin Lahtinen and Ivar Gestranius’ ‘Box Sofa’ provides both partial privacy while functioning as a room-dividing device


Dock-In Bays. Workbays. Hubs. Touch Downs. Me Places. Think Tanks. Pods. There’s a new design typology on the block and it’s called… Well, that’s just it. What is it called? When it comes to the growing trend within the office-design sector for large-scale, free-standing, quasi-architectural elements that serve, beyond responding to the need of the individual worker, to the shape the landscape of the office in space-defining terms, rhetoric is working overtime as manufacturers figure out how to frame these new products linguistically.


The Bouroullecs’ ‘Joyn’ micro-architectural office system for Vitra, launched in 2002. Described by the manufacturer as a ‘management tool in a time of cultural change’, it takes a cue from George Nelson’s office programmes of the 60s and 70s


This year’s Orgatec fair in Cologne – the leading office-design and contract sector trade event internationally – testified to the continuing development of this typology, with a number of manufacturers presenting product families that promise, among other things, to ‘protect’, ‘anchor’ and ‘focus’ their users. Parachuted into an office’s open plan, they operate as spatial interventions, structurally independent spaces – rooms within rooms, if you will – in which staffers can either come together in an ad-hoc way to discuss ideas or, conversely, to which they can withdraw for undisturbed, high-concentration work.


Dutch designer Ineke Hans’s ‘Smallroom’ sofa for Offecct is one part furniture, one part interior architecture, such is its emphasis on division and demarcation



Architonic and Designboom launch strategic alliance


"It is our aim to provide readers and the market with an efficient and high-quality environment for research, inspiration and communication. To this end, Architonic and Designboom are a perfect match because they complement each other both in terms of content and geography"...

...This statement from Designboom co-founder Birgit Lohmann sums up neatly our vision for this strategic alliance. Each of the two companies, which will continue to operate autonomously, is an international market leader in its own particular area of expertise – put quite simply, Architonic as a product database and Designboom as online architecture and design magazine.

Architonic as product database and Designboom as architecture and design magazine are international market leaders in their respective areas of expertise


Intelligent linking

The core of the cooperation is the integration of content from the Architonic product database into Designboom's editorial content. As a result, for the 4 million readers that Designboom enjoys every month, their daily update of news from the worlds of architecture, design and art is enhanced by details of the latest products and materials from all around the world. This opens up additional markets and channels of communication for the over 1,000 manufacturers who already present their products on Architonic. With immediate effect, five new products from each of these manufacturers are now also presented daily on Designboom. If they wish, Designboom members are able to have their entire Architonic product range appear in the Designboom Product Library. The product data is kept up-to-date, of course, on a centralised, daily basis via the Architonic database.

At the core of the collaboration is the integration of content from Architonic's product database into Designboom's editorial content


Shared values

Shared values and visions are the most important basis for the alliance. For example, the founders of both companies come from within their respective industries. Before establishing Designboom, Birgit Lohmann and Massimo Mini worked as designers with masters such as Achille Castiglioni, Enzo Mari and Vico Magistretti, while the two Architonic founders, Nils Becker and Tobias Lutz, studied architecture under teachers such as Frank Gehry and Daniel Libeskind. It is therefore not surprising that, thanks to their highly selective choice of content, both portals enjoy a high level of credibility on the design and architecture scene. A further vital precondition for this is that, to the present day, both companies are owner-operated and independent, and can thus concentrate on sustainable long-term development rather than short-term profits. To put it in a nutshell, the alliance is based on a shared commitment to quality content, daily inspiration, efficient working instruments and a passion for the cause.

The data in the product library is kept up-to-date on a centralised, daily basis via the Architonic database


Architonic Products & Materials: Inspiring Search Results N° 11


stilhaus introduces its tenants


On 30 November, stilhaus opens its doors. After a year of preparation, almost all of the spaces have been rented out. The list of tenants has been drawn up and promises visitors to the 20,000-square-metre venue a unique opportunity in Switzerland to encounter leading manufacturers, specialist retailers and brands from the construction, interior architecture, garden and furnishing sectors.

In front of the building, a carefully designed garden is being created, which will function as exhibition space for garden products and garden design, as well as space for a pool, a house and a garden restaurant. Inside, dozens of craftsmen are working away. The shop-fitting for the more than 100 tenants is in full swing. "The timescale for completion before the opening is ambitious, but we're on course," says managing director Daniel Medina. There were a number of hurdles to clear up to this point, in order to realise the vision.


Architonic Architecture & Design: Inspiring Spaces N° 4



The Most Recent Projects From Our 'Architecture & Design' Library


bureau SLA


Noorderparkbar | Amsterdam | Netherlands | Completed March 2012
photographer: Jeroen Musch

rené schmid architekten ag


Umweltarena | Spreitenbach | Switzerland | Completed August 2012
photographer: © Michael Egloff

Nikolas Kerl


Stan & Harvey, Special Edition | Switzerland | August 2012
photographer: Björn Allemann

Copyright © 2012 Architonic AG, All rights reserved.

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