miercuri, 21 ianuarie 2009
BULO: iF product design award for KEI
The international jury of iF International Forum Design has selected the BULO Kei desk for an iF product design award 2009.
Kei is developed by the Bulo Designers. It is a new modular desk concept with the organic form of a pebble serving as starting point and the chaotic-harmonious overall image of a pebble beach as the architectural finishing point. Desks as pebble shapes are eminently suited to create beautifully organic combinations.
These new shared hubs are flexible: one, two or seven pebbles can be fitted together in a myriad of different ways and are easily regrouped. Acoustic and linked wall elements serve as a flexible separation between the individual workstations. For clients, this boils down to a simple and understandable concept: one desk as a building stone in a flexible organisation.
Images by: Fien Muller / OWI
This year, 2808 products competed for an iF product design award.
... AND Homo Ludens:
Late last century, trend watchers were already proclaiming that man at work would increasingly be doing business working from his home office whilst by the same token the homo ludens as a creative brain was likely to gain ground as a factor of importance. As a concomitant event, office landscapes were predicted to evolve from cubicles, across open plan office environments to shared workstations. By the start of the new century, the workstation had become a friendly and cosy café. After all, the best ideas are said to develop over a chat during coffee breaks, not behind a solitary desk. These days, the trendiest and coolest office environments seem to look more like a lounge, an Irish pub or an adventure playground. It is as though the one thing we are not expected to do is to put in any work.
... AND Love your office
Going in to work with a sense of relish in the morning is a basic requirement. Which is why we are keen to highlight the message that is ‘Love your office’. The emotional component involved in work is every bit as important to Bulo as the functional, ergonomic and ecological aspects of any piece of office furniture. To a workplace that fosters, stimulates, encourages creativity, that is individual and offers plenty of scope to develop yourself as an individual. Whether this be around a shared workstation Double You (Hannes Wettstein), a separate office room H2O (Bataille & ibens) or a cubicle Desk (Vincent Van Duysen). Chairs that are out of the ordinary, including the Easy Rider (Danny Venlet) and the Skater (Hannes Wettstein), maintain a high level of fun and creativity in the workplace.
... AND Back to work:
Nonetheless, we have decided on ‘Back to work’ as this year’s slogan to contextualise our latest collections. To a certain degree, this means ‘Back to basics’. Contrary to what the media are trying to tell us, most people are not nomads travelling the world, just popping into the office on the odd occasion. Most workers make the daily commute to work each day of the week. Today, - if anything - office landscapes have become particularly varied and variegated: as trends go, collective work benches are proving particularly successful, yet they offer little in the way of privacy and poor scope for personal adjustment.
The office as a cosy home environment where workers sit down to work together is a trend which we have come to have a few reservations over after a number of years of hands-on experience with this concept: offices are not meant to be all fun and cosiness either. People work to efficient standards in an environment where they feel good as individuals and which have the right functional aspects in place. Which is why the Bulo design team is confident that there is a demand for a ‘basic’ piece of office furniture that is aimed at the individual and which can be used in different ways and in different settings.
... AND Kei:
Last year, the BuloDesigners developed Kei, a new modular desk concept with the organic form of a pebble serving as the starting point and the chaotic-harmonic overall image of a pebble beach as the architectural finishing point. Setting out from the ‘new architecture’ we present an organic furniture piece that is both sober and elegant AND following the ‘playmobilisimo’ trend that has greatly influenced its styling as a result of the success of the virtual world. Desks as pebble shapes are eminently suited to create beautifully organic combinations. These new shared hubs are flexible: one, two or seven pebbles can be fitted together in a myriad of different ways and are easily regrouped. Acoustic and linked wall elements serve as a flexible separation between the individual workstations. These lightweight walls are easy to move around and can be adjusted to suit all different shapes. The dividers also act as notice boards and come in fashionable powder box pink and timeless black. In developing Kei, we pursued simplicity, in style and in implementation. This has resulted in a single work top shape and one single colour. A table top in lily-white with an elegant support frame in coffee bean black. The tricot fabric-upholstered dividers are available in different colours bringing the appropriate ambience desired. To the customers, this boils down to a simple and understandable concept: one desk as a building stone in a flexible organisation. We are promoting ‘collective individuality’, much in the same way as cells in a living organism, or pebbles on a beach.
Kei is available with a fixed height, or as an adjustable height model where individual users can adjust height using the lever. Its shape is suited to both left and right-handed users. A striking element in the restrained design is the ‘black pod’ that has been conspicuously nestled into place underneath the white tabletop. This felt storage space serves both as a cable duct and as a logical space to store redundant cables, leads and adapters. The white porcelain dish covering the pod inside the desktop conducts the cables and serves as the perfect storage space for mobile phones, keys, pens,… Eye-catching by virtue of its organic leg support, Bulo also devised a conference table as part of the same series, which can be made to take on different configurations thanks to its unique shape. Here too, we set out from the same basic concept: one shape, which - linked together - can be built into a larger conference table seating four, six, or eighteen persons. A small Kei table, which can be used both as a standing table or as an occasional table, rounds off the collection. The organic form language, the materials used and the new colour all combine to enhance the emotional ‘love your office’ feeling.
... AND Mtoo:
Of all Bulo designs, it is probably the M2 that has gone on to become an icon in the truest sense. Several museums have purchased M2 by dint of its revolutionary concept: in 1996, the 1m2 designed by Luc Vincent and the Bulo Design Team, had been a highly innovative furniture piece. Worldwide, architects lauded the M2 on the merit of its shape and function. M2 is an individual workstation that has been reconceived by the BuloDesigners whilst retaining its basic concept: a drawer unit, a base plate and a floating worktop.
Mtoo retains this qualities as well the square metre concept, be it no longer in a square shape, moving along with IT developments and the fact that ultimately the paperless office has proved to be unfeasible. The biggest innovations in place act in response to the new functions and emotions that are expected from the 21st century desk. ‘New functions’ meaning the M2’s individual height adjustment and the various accessories that serve to facilitate filing and sorting. As to the ‘new emotions’, we are creating an optimum sense of well-being. A carpet by way of a base plate for example allows users to kick off their shoes and work on bare feet, only stimulating their sense of freedom. A vase of flowers or a plant that is nicely integrated helps to reduce stress. Standard, each Mtoo comes with a cushion for a short power nap. Studies have shown a short siesta enhances efficiency, for the employee as well as for the employer. ‘New emotions’ also means refined styling in terms of details and materials used. Mtoo is only available in ‘timeless white’ powder coated MDF and is entirely uni-coloured. This only serves to further underscore the icon quality of the Mtoo, turning the desk into an architectural object. Mtoo places the individual centre stage, reflecting the ‘Love your office –Back to work’ philosophy.
... AND Back to nature:
The new Kei and Mtoo collections were developed using ecologically responsible materials. Bulo places a great premium on responsible forestry. All MDF used in the new collections is FSC-labelled. In future, Bulo is aspiring to market wholly FSC-approved products. Powder coating the MDF used is also an environmentally responsible finishing technique involving little in the way of waste material. Singular and distinctive materials such as ceramics, felt, polypropylene are used, both for the appeal and the emotional value they exude whilst at the same time being either Co2 neutral or 100% recyclable.
... AND BuloDesigners:
In 2007, we launched the Love Table, designed by leading French architect Edouard François, as part of our Carte Blanche collection. For the new 2008 collections, we purposely opted not to contract the services of a celebrity star architect, but simply to engage in pure product design, taking our cues from market demand and sheer office functionality. ‘The BuloDesigners’ who can rightfully lay claim to a wealth of experience and a deep-rooted know-how of the office environment and its market of many years’ standing, are living proof that quality design is altogether distinct from celebrity airs and graces.’ Hilde Bouchez, Design historian.
For more information: Anne Verbeeck (firstname.lastname@example.org)
... AND Still lifes for Bulo
Next to architecture and design, Bulo pays a great deal of attention to photography. After years spent working with laurelled interior and architecture photographers such as Bart Van Leuven, Verne, Kristien Daem,... next year we will be launching a fresh collaboration with art photographers. Geert Goiris photographed a series of designs in the baroque interior of the Musée d’ Ansembourg during an exhibition at the Musee de l’Art et Décoration in Liège. For the 2008 collections, artist and photographer Fien Muller interpreted the new Bulo collections in the ambience of her ‘Still Lifes’ series. Her work is represented by Hoet-Bekaert Art Gallery.