The age of the big corporate hub may be waning, outside the Fortune 500 elite, but three new compact HQS show how small spaces may be made to work hard, while incorporating eclectic details and a sense of identity
Compact HQS from NYC to NZ
Rafael de Cárdenas’ studio Architecture at Large has created a new HQ for Glossier in New York. Emily Weiss’ beauty brand has been a swift success story, abandoning the lustrous complexity of Insta-era make-up in favour of sleek millennial minimalism. De Cárdenas has taken a similar approach to the space at 6th and Spring, going beyond the expected to make the most of the company’s social culture. ‘We counterpointed the density of hot desking with open spaces for play,’ he explains. This ‘loungey, social’ feel is enhanced by the oversized, architectural aesthetic of the sofas and break areas, which the teams are encouraged to use to work as well as pause. Manhattan skyline views are framed by a landscape of curved custom pieces, walls and mirrors, while the company powder room has bright red Corian countertops. Kvadrat fabrics are paired with a range of vintage fittings, and the mood is distinctly art deco, with spartan modern accessories from companies such as Hay added into the mix to create a space that glows with promise.
Tim Kelleher and Matthew Arnold’s six-person agency specialises in web design, and has a strong collective feel. The agency’s new studio space by Knight Associates fulfils the pair’s philosophical approach to design – ‘rigorous and uncompromising, with the occasional element of pure whim’. Housed in a former warehouse above an existing chandlery in Lyttleton, on New Zealand’s South Island, the space is generous, with deliberate nods to midcentury design in the form of dark wood screens and fluted panelling, and a scattering of classic modernist furniture. Beyond this, the original fabric of the building has been allowed to shine through, with metal trusses and polished concrete floors. full-height curtains and sizeable sliding doors help divide the space and preserve a domestic feel.
Architect rufus Knight set up his Auckland studio in 2016, following stints at fearon Hay, also in the New Zealand capital, and vincent van duysen Architects in Antwerp. This interior might quote from the classics, but the careful handling of scale and materials creates an intimate creative space.
THIS PICTURE AND BELOW, THE GLOSSIER HQ, WHERE BREAK AREAS ARE FURNISHED WITH CURVED CUSTOM-BUILT SOFAS IN THE BRAND’S SIGNATURE pink
Above, THE roof’s ORIGINAL METAL TRUSSES create A robust INDUSTRIAL CANVAS IN THE New officeLeft, THE fluted PANELLING AND CABINETRY reference THE BASE of ACHILLE CASTIGLIONI’S ‘TACCIA’ LAMP