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  • Show preview: Workspace Design Show 2021

    Styling Bregje Nix
    730 565 Hamish Kilburn
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    Show preview: Workspace Design Show 2021

    In just over one month, Workspace Design Show will open its doors, welcoming the commercial interiors community to discover and discuss tomorrow’s places of work at London’s Business Design Centre from November 4 – 5 2021…

    As the summer comes to an end and people return to their offices, what better time to look ahead to a show which will bring together the latest products in the sector, celebrating the creativity of workplace design.

    Styling Bregje Nix

    After a year and half of working from home, we are in a moment of transition. Companies are considering the most appropriate ways to work right now, going beyond the pure productivity-orientated goals of old, with a greater emphasis on health, safety and wellbeing of staff.

    According to Microsoft’s 2021 Annual Work Trend Index, 66 per cent of businesses said they were considering redesigning physical spaces to better accommodate hybrid work environments. Meanwhile, nearly three quarters of Gen Z want more opportunities to collaborate with colleagues face-to-face and the chance for career development and mentoring within the physical office space should not be underestimated.

    The Workspace Design Show offers a great opportunity to explore these key themes in our new working normal. The demand for inspiring office spaces is evidenced by the quality of exhibitors at the event. Humanscale is launching a new version of its Liberty Ocean chair, which uses two pounds of recycled fishing nets, a material widely regarded as the most harmful type of plastic. Also featuring at the show are the new DESSO® Serene and Serene Colour collections from Tarkett, launched this year and designed specifically to apply a much-needed human touch to workplace interiors. The subtle patterns of DESSO Serene and Serene Colour take creative cues from the serenity of watercolour paintings.

    Office chairs overlooking coastal views

    Image credit: Liberty Ocean chair by humanscale

    The Workspace Design Show’s talks programme features a range of high profile thought leaders including May Fawzy, Founder of MF Design Studio and Director at BIID, Katrina Kostic Samen, Head of Workplace Design at KKS Savills, Claire Ness, Inclusive Design Lead at HMRC. A range of topics will be discussed over the two days, including sustainable design models, how acoustics are transforming productivity and the impact of office design on brand identity, design for diversity and inclusivity.

    One of the best features at the WDS is the VIP lounge designed by Rainlight, built by AASK US and curated by Obolife. The lounge is designed to represent the ephemerality of our world, which has been enhanced by the recent year of remote working and our increased reliance on digital communications. The design also reflects the way the outside world is brought into our homes in a way that we never have before experienced. The lounge will be realised in raw aluminium profiles and expanded metal mesh. These are 100% recyclable materials and do not contain any harmful coatings or use any harmful processes.

    The WDS team is also working with a renowned lighting designer on a beautiful entrance feature to enhance visitor experience. Lauren’s vision for the welcoming experience to the show plays on the theatrical nature of the cinematic world; heavy drapes creating a luxurious and moody backdrop, waiting for the main feature to begin in excitement and anticipation.  Replacing the fabric materials with lighting, in connection with the use of clever programming, will create this same wondrous world for all to view and enjoy. Collaborators: Lauren Lever, Design Director at Minoux Lighting Design, products by PROLICHT X Tom Dixon.

    Over at the leisure area, inhibitions and insecurities will be washed away, allowing for open conversations and collaboration. Workspace Design Show wanted to create an area that encourages conversation and interaction. This area is designed and curated by family run fit-out and furniture firm Spaces Taylored and commercial office specialists Seven Hills Workspace.

    Attendees also might notice a live, brightly coloured feature as they explore the Workspace Design Show. WDS exhibitor, Square Mile Farms are showcasing one of their innovative Farmstands, and it’s growing ultra-fresh veg and herbs! They’ll be harvesting the produce grown in this hydroponic growing tower on day two and making it available to attendees.

    As autumn approaches and the return to the office continues, the countdown is on to a wealth of workspace innovation at the very first Workspace Design Show.

    Main image credit: Serene Collection by Tarkett

    Hamish Kilburn / 30.09.2021

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