Interior designers need to generate new design concepts for each unique project. Translating this concept into the final design which also aligns to the client’s need is the designer’s challenge. Quite often, designers and students succumb to copying or re-using ideas. Be it their own in a previous project or an image of another project, it becomes tough to not repeat. How do you achieve that? Students also fall prey to first creating a design and then imposing some concept on it after. How do you avoid that? Today, let’s talk about some unique examples of Interior architecture by distinctive designers in the world. Through these examples we can pick up pointers on generating concepts and translating them successfully into an interior design.
1. Glassel School of Art by Steven Holl Architects
This amphitheater style social space inside the Glassel School of Art is an example of a simple concept coming to life. The central corner where two wings of the school meet is the potential gathering space for students thus setting the relevance of the design. Next, the designers take cue from the surrounding modernist buildings in the campus, some of them accredited to Master architects Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Spanish architect Rafael Moneo. Setting the tone for the upcoming space is the architectural language of the existing buildings. A stepped seating space for students, naturally lit by a huge skylight can become a catalyst for interaction, lunch space, discussion spaces and small student events – making this a multi-functional space defined by users. The last bit, is the play and celebration of material. The bare concrete bathes the space in grey, an interesting use of shades and tones, creating the illusion of a homogeneous unit with natural light. (More Details)
2. Brick Cave by H&P Architects
Designs can be generated also by careful study of climate and lifestyle. A good example of such a design concept is the Brick Cave apartment in Vietnam by H&P Architects. The apartments are built with two brick walls, as if wrapped completely in a cave. This outer courtyard, so to speak, allows the users to enjoy the sky, a garden, light and nature in glimpses throughout the year. Even in the rough monsoons this safe sheltered space instead of an open garden is more user friendly as well as in the summers, where the brick screens offer respite from the glaring sun. The balconies are staggered throughout the inner facade, to offer privacy and thus every apartment gets a different frame of the view. The double layer protects the residents from the surrounding noise, pollution, dust and busy street view. A detailed study of user groups, climate and site conditions in the busy lanes of Hanoi informed this design concept which the architects translated into reality very beautifully. (More Details)
3. Stone House interiors by Wespi de Meuron Romeo Architects
Sustainable approach towards design can also result in creative design concepts. One such example is the adaptive re-use of the historic Stone House in Caviano, Switzerland. The ancient rubble masonry stone facade of the house was to house a modern family with modern needs. Incorporating the spaces and adjusting them around the masonry inspired the idea. The architects came up with a contemporary minimalist interior design concept while preserving the old facade. White, grey and light wooden finishes dictate the feel of the inside space. Play in levels appropriate with the old structure, wooden partitions and glass to create frames and highlight the old stone joinery are main features of this design. Old spaces have a charm of their own. The modern approach in this interior space does not aim to overshadow this charm, it tries to celebrate it. (More Details)
4. Reframe by Alexandru Fleșeriu Péter Eszter
Speaking of old spaces, this is Reframe, a new workshop and event space created in the old castle in Bontida, Romania. The architects Alexandry Fleseriu and Peter Eszter wanted to respect the old heritage and highlight the castle ruins. The simple white furniture against the old facade backdrop creates an eye-catching contrast. Instead of recreating the old broken arches in the castle, the designers interpreted them as lights creating an ‘Arch’ with the suspended bulbs. This feature reminds the visitor of the earlier space and lights up the galleries. This temporary project is based on the idea of innovative installations and practical approach while celebrating the past with intelligent interventions. (More Details)
5. The Other Place by Studio 10
A theme based boutique hotel in China, The Other Place by Studio 10 is inspired by M. C. Escher’s artworks. Every space is created as a 3D illusion which gives the guests an other worldly experience. This futuristic space has block colors and interesting forms which create a functional yet innovative interior design. The designers conjured a flow of mysterious and seemingly maze like space by blurring the lines among 2D and 3D elements thus generating optical illusions. A fresh idea strikingly translated into a mind-bending space. (More details)
Every project presents the opportunity to create a narrative – a design which means something. In order to reach a concept which suits the site and aligns with the brief, a thorough research is required. Client needs, stakeholders, site location and topography, climate, surrounding context, inspiration, green approach and materials are important factors which help generate concepts. Interpretation of the results of these study can inform a relevant design idea. Challenging budget, site situations and restrictions can also result in meaningful design ideas. Concepts generated through careful consideration of all these factors are honest in their approach and most often the best ones.