Best in show Bulthaupâ€™s T.O. showroom Habitat Valencia Interior Design Show Plus: Fab new flooring
1968 Social ocial environmental 1968 S movements take hold.
WHO SHapeS tHe tH future Of green deSign? You do.
1978 1978 E Earth arth Day brings awareness to Earth’s need for continual care.
What was once a quiet evolution has become a revolutionary force. Your desire for sustainable design has helped redefine the meaning of green. Since we began making nora® rubber flooring over 50 years ago, we’ve evolved with you.
1988 1 1988 1,000 ,000 communities in America initiate curbside recycling.
Your concern for the environment continues to create new standards for designing in harmony with nature. it is why we continually explore ways to blend the best of technology with greener thinking.
1998 E EPA PA launches voluntary 1998 programs for energy, water, indoor air quality, waste and smart growth.
it starts with you. You and your challenges. You and your world.
2008 U U.S. .S. Green Building Council member organizations grow to 15,000.
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COVER — 36 Luminous Column chandelier by Gregor Herman. Photo by Chris Harrison
36 SPARKLE AND SHINE — 41 Lux Design gives a pair of university dental offices the old razzle-dazzle. By David Steiner
Best in Show DEPARTMENTS GOOD, BETTER, BEST — 31 There were no bad choices at the 2009 edition of Habitat Valencia. By Erin Donnelly ROOM TO SPARE — 24 A careful tweaking of Bulthaup‘s Toronto showroom puts the focus firmly on the kitchen manufacturer’s incomparable offerings. By John Bentley Mays
INSIDE — 8 WHAT’S UP — 11 THE GOODS — 17 Floored The latest trends in flooring and floorcoverings. By Michael Totzke WHO’S WHO — 46
AIMING HIGH — 36 With the theme of The Ultimate, the Interior Design Show 2010 set its sights skyward. By Karolina Olechnowicz
LAST WORD — 50 Baby, it’s cold inside Canada’s first retail walk-in freezer. By Michael Totzke
March/April 2010 VOL.47 NO.2
Martin Spreer Editor
Michael Totzke Managing Editor
Erin Donnelly Associate Editors
Janet Collins, David Lasker, Rhys Phillips, Leslie C. Smith Contributing Writers
John Bentley Mays, Karolina Olechnowicz, David Steiner Art Direction/Design Ellie Robinson, Lisa
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Good show Let’s hear it for the Interior Design Show, which, this past January, made a triumphant return to its original location, the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. The North Building never looked so good, and IDS – the 12th annual edition – welcomed a record 48,000 showgoers to the opening-night gala and weekend events. For a glimpse inside the gala (attended by such star designers as Jaime Hayón and Tord Boontje), see Who’s Who (page 47). And for highlights of the show, see Karolina Olechnowicz’s report, “Aiming high” (page 36). This year IDS spearheaded the inaugural Toronto International Design Festival, a weeklong celebration of local and international designers – with venues across the city hosting design events, exhibits, lectures and more. “IDS and TIDF are a way of making Toronto a must-see design designation,” says Shauna Levy, co-founder of IDS and vice-president of MMPI Canada, creator of the show and festival. “The events are meant to emulate what we see in cities that are home to a major design fair, such as Milan, Miami and London.” The ever-popular Come Up to My Room returned to the Gladstone Hotel, while Radiant Dark relocated to Commerce Court. Other venues included Harbourfront Centre, the Royal Ontario Museum and the Art Gallery of Ontario. The Design Exchange was home to the week’s key event, an all-day symposium. Conversations in Design: A World Without Oil brought together 15 preeminent designers and thinkers from around the world for a lively and provocative discussion about sustainable design. Dutch-born Boontje was there, in conversation with Enrico Bressen, co-founder of the innovative housewares company Artecnica. So was Dr. Dayna Baumeister of the Biomimicry Guild, the influential worldwide consultancy for bio-inspired design. Canadian participants included visionary designer Bruce Mau; Todd Wood, the VP of Industrial Design at Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry; and Mirko Zardini, director of the Canadian Centre for Architecture. “Mirko did an excellent job setting the stage by explaining how the design community responded to the first energy crisis in the 1970s, and the rest just followed,” says IDS symposium director Rachel Gotlieb. “Architects, designers, captains of industry, museum professional, academics and students were all there, and it was a great meeting of the minds.” c I Michael Totzke firstname.lastname@example.org
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We don’t suggest using Johnsonite® outdoors, but we do suggest taking your creativity wherever it wants to go. All the alluring colors and patterns in Optima®, Granit™, Melodia™ and Aria™ are now available in both sheet and tile, so you can create custom designs with unique shapes and contemporary patterns. Now, finding the balance between spectacular and practical is not only possible, it’s the starting point. That’s what Balanced Choice is all about. So let your imagination go. Design the impossible. And visit johnsonite.com to make it a reality.
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MAR./APR. Awarded in Alberta Every two years, the Interior Designers of Alberta honour their own. The 2009 IDA Design Competition attracted 41 entries, “the highest participation to date,” notes Karen L. Robertson (prinicipal, KLR Interior Design), who organized the competition with Michele Gunn (associate, Sizeland Evans Interior Design; and IDA president). After careful consideration, five judges (from Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Vancouver) chose 17 winners: 2 Gold, 6 Silver and 9 Bronze. The big winner was MartensGroup Licensed Interior Design Studio, with one Gold, one Silver and three Bronze. Walker Lawson Interior Design also did well, netting one Gold and one Silver. The other multiple winner was Shearer Design, which won four Bronze. The two Gold projects – the MartensGroup’s Pengrowth Corporation Livingston Place and Walker Lawson’s Newalta Corporation Corporate Headquarters, both in Calgary – were in the category Office Over $80 Per Square Foot Construction. According to the project summary for the Pengrowth office, “The company’s president, unapologetic in his request for a traditional aesthetic for his new premises consisting of 11 floors in a newly constructed glass office tower, requested that our interior design solution exude the sense of permanence and solidity.” The MartensGroup
Above and far left Newalta Corporation Corporate Headquarters, designed by Walker Lawson, offers ease of collaboration and communication. Left and below Pengrowth Corporation Livingston Place, designed by the MartensGroup, uses traditional elements in an experimental way.
responded by using traditional elements (such as columns, cornices, wall panelling and ceiling coffering) in a new way, experimenting with proportion and scale. Says MartensGroup associate Douglas Niwa, “In a design world that can seem a little infatuated with the futuristic, design can also achieve a surprisingly progressive and innovative aesthetic by looking to the past for guidance. Historical reference when combined with a contemporary design sensibility can produce an exceptionally sophisticated hybrid style.” According to the project summary for the Newalta office, “Five employee floors were to be designed with the premise that natural daylight,
ease of collaboration and communication, flexibility and personal comfort should be available to all without sacrificing the efficient use of space.” Walker Lawson’s design provides an international aesthetic that is contemporary and timeless. Says Walker Lawson principal Jane Lawson, “It is a true honour for our firm to have won an IDA Gold award for Newalta Corporation, and to have our work recognized by our industry peers. More importantly,
though, is that we have made a major impact on our client’s operational success. To the Newalta people we tip our hat and thank them for the opportunity to be part of something much bigger than ourselves.”
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 11
Klaus and company included in the Financial Post’s annual list of canada’s 50 Best Managed companies is Nienkämper, the Toronto-based designer and manufacturer of sophisticated high-end furniture for corporate offices and public spaces. This is just the latest in a long list of honours for the internationally renowned company and its founder, Klaus Nienkämper. “This country has given me so much – nothing could make me prouder than to be named among its 50 best-managed companies,” he says. “it is particularly welcome to have this acknowledgement of our success coming out of the worst downturn in our company’s 40-year history,” it has been a challenging time for Nienkämper, considering the crisis in U.S. commercial development; until
12 caNaDiaN INTERIORS March/april 2010
recently, 85 per cent of its customer base was in corporate america. “Fortunately we had recognized our vulnerability to U.S. financial cycles and began developing our markets overseas,” says Nienkämper. “We’ve enjoyed particular success in the Middle East, which has helped to offset our dependence on our U.S. customers by over 30 per cent.” With many long-service employees, the company – which is at the forefront of the sustainability movement in commercial furnishings – boasts a remarkably low turnover rate. investing in training, Nienkämper offers both apprenticeships and co-op placements to raise the standards of furniture design and production in canada. it has also formed partnerships with many local school boards,
community colleges and national art institutions, and provides numerous scholarships and internships. Nienkämper is focused on creating a workplace and public environments where people can realize their full potential. The company occupies a sprawling 120,000-square-foot facility in north Toronto that houses state-of-the-art furnituremanufacturing equipment, much of it customized to meet Nienkämper’s demanding design standards. The company’s owner has always been an impressive corporate citizen. Klaus Nienkämper was a founding member of the Toronto Design Exchange and more recently worked with architect Daniel libeskind to create the royal Ontario Museum’s Spirit house
chair. he was a major donor to the rOM revitalization project and the Ontario college of art and Design, and has provided funding to the art Gallery of Ontario for special events.
Clockwise from above Kloud Serpentine by Karim Rashid; Blox Benches; the Granger Collection; Klaus Nienkämper with the Spirit House Chair.
From top Peony; Wisteria; Petal Stripe.
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Return to Chelsea Farrow & Ball, the British manufacturer of traditional wallpapers and paint, has introduced The Chelsea Papers, a floral collection inspired by original 19th-century pure silk woven jacquards. It comprises three designs: Wisteria, a trailing pattern featuring the blossoming flower; Peony, a bold design that takes its inspiration from the ornamental flower; and Petal Stripe, which is meant to work in harmony with the pair of florals. Each design comes in 20 colourways, including neutrals, pastels and metallics. A selection of unusual combinations has been included, where black is paired with either gold or muted grey neutrals for a modern look. All Farrow & Ball papers are made to order at the companyâ€™s factory in Dorset, England, and crafted using a traditional block print technique.
as it is written
a new exhibition at the canadian centre for architecture in Montreal highlights pivotal moments in the ongoing relationship between writing and architecture over the past 50 years. called Take Note, it is the result of a research seminar led by Sylvia lavin in the department of architecture and Urban Design at the University of california at los angeles. “in the 1960s, a small oppositional element in architecture forged its own counterculture by turning its energies away from building toward writing,” says lavin. “in its hands, the page became a site for design and texts became architectural works in their own right.” lavin argues that architecture has never been the same: “This turn toward writing soon engaged architecture with broader questions of pop culture, mass media, advertising and emerged technologies, setting in motion a fundamental transformation of the disci-
pline whose momentum remains unabated to this day. Take Note offers an album of snapshots of key episodes in that transformation.” The exhibition features works from the cca collection and other archives, as well as works from contemporary architectural studios – including Gehry partners, Greg lynn FOrM, Diller Scofidio + renfro, Stan allen architect and Bernard Tschumi. Take Note runs at the canadian centre for architecture through May 30.
From top Installation view; Bernard Tschumi, Advertisements for Architecture, 1976-78; Letter to Adolph Loos from Bertold Brecht, 1974.
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1–Psychedelia Collection Digitalia, designed exclusively for Abet Laminati by Karim Rashid, features 27 digital print patterns – making a strong impression with shapes, signs, lights and colours. The computer-created complex 2-D graphic designs, made possible through the use of new technologies and software, give the laminate sheet flooring the perception of 3-D. Digitalia vividly illustrates the Canadian’s design philosophy: to arouse feelings and emotions. abetlaminati.com 1
Floored The latest trends in flooring and floorcoverings. —By Michael Totzke
2–Cut And Print New York–based Trove, best known for nature-inspired products, has introduced its first line of photographic dyed carpeting. Crafted using continuous-filament fibres, and available in nylon or a nylon/ wool blend, these tightly woven carpets can be produced as wall-to-wall. The pattern is applied directly on the carpet, which means the design is not limited by the carpet’s shape or weave structure. The collection is offered in Trove’s standard design and colours, as well as custom creations in an unlimited colour range. troveline.com 2
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 17
WOOD WORKS 3
1–African Adventure U.S.-based DuChateau Floors produces wide-planked hardwood floors that are distressed, hard-wax-oiled, smoked and brushed to achieve a true vintage look. Part of the company’s Terra collection, Zimbabwe floors (shown) capture the natural essence of Africa. Since they’re made with sustainably harvested wood, all DuChateau products qualify for LEED credits. duchateaufloors.com 2–Cheers! Armstrong’s Barrel Creek collection was inspired by the romance of wine country and the ingenuity of designers who repurpose wine barrels. Armstrong has reinterpreted the look in 2 1/4-inch strips of premium rift-and-quartered oak. Every detail has been considered, from vintners’ marks burned into the flooring surface to authentic cooperage stamps. A deep colour wash enhances the grain and provides an aged appearance. armstrong.com 18 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
3–Locked In Place Quebec-based Model Hardwood’s new engineered-wood collection, Modelloc, offers easy installation, requiring neither nails nor glue. Its plywood structure is made of 9-mm-thick Baltic birch, covered with 3 mm of veneer. Manufactured in two widths (3 7/16 and 5 3/16 inches), the flooring is available in birch, red oak, maple, cherry, walnut, jatoba and tiger wood. pgmodel.com
4–You Must Remember This Hardwood floor brand Mirage, in Quebec, has added Handcrafted Oak to its product line. With the weathered look of traditional floors, Oak’s wide boards are available in Carousel, a creamy white (shown); Château, a stately grey; and Teddy Bear, a soft brown. With all it products, Mirage guarantees absolute consistency in species, finish, colouring, width and thickness. miragefloors.com
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Curve and Hybrid – offer a myriad of pattern combinations; they can be applied to both 24-inch modular and low-VOC Powerbond VCTT (variable cushion tufted textile). Custom-designed logos or brand images can easily be incorporated into inlay sections. tandus.com
1–Creatively Speaking Creative Matters is a Toronto-based boutique company best known for its handmade custom carpets that grace high-profile spaces around the globe. In collaboration with Georgia-based Milliken, Creative Matters has come up with Willow and Lace – a collection of intricate printed broadloom carpet, which layers modern industrial and urban elements (such as distressed steel) with fine
detailed pieces reminiscent of traditional handmade lace. milliken.com 2–Go With The Flow An addition to Tandus’s Manufactured Landscapes collection – inspired by the photography of Canada’s own Edward Burtynsky – Suzanne Tick’s Landscape Patterns allows designers to build pattern inlays within the floor plane. Three designs – Squiggle Ray (shown), Blade
3–Skin Deep Shaw Hospitality Group’s Henna collection was influenced by Mehndi, the art of henna-painting designs typically applied during Southeast Asian social occasions. It includes eight tufted and 20 print and computer yarn placement (CYP) patterns. Shown here in earthen hues, the tufted and CYP versions of Henna can be customized with more than 230 colours, while the print version is available in more than 720 colours. shawcontactgroup.com
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 19
1–Colour Guard Contract Plus, the latest collection from Johnsonite, is ideal for use in hospitals, schools, shops and offices. Featuring a semi-directional design and homogenous construction, Contract Plus is available in 13 colours, with guaranteed availability across the company’s product lines. All colours are available in both sheet and tile. johnsonite.com
selection of sheet and tile patterns and colourways, and can be waterjet cut. forboflooringNA.com
2–Traffic Pattern Offering the best features of textile flooring – comfort underfoot and sound insulation – Forbo’s Flotex features a densely flocked surface of nylon 6.6 fibres firmly anchored into a reinforced base layer of solid vinyl. Designed for heavy foot and wheel traffic, it is hardwearing and stain-resistant; completely waterproof; and features Bioguard antimicrobial treatment built into its fibre and backing. Forbo is available in a broad 20 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
3–Nice And Quiet Saga2, the newest vinyl tile from Gerflor, comes with an acoustic backing made of pure vinyl and cork, reducing impact noise significantly; it also has a 100 per cent pure vinyl wear layer of 0.7 mm thickness to ensure excellent resistance to heavy foot traffic. The tile designs – wood, mineral, textile and natural – are available in grey, beige and blue tones. gerflorusa.com
4–Second Nature Nora system’s newest high-performance rubber floor covering, norament 925 serra, was inspired by the dramatic textures and colours of nature’s landscape. Each of the 25 versions – in tones of blue, brown, grey and red – is made up of a solid background with a fine scatter design of complementary colour chips. Like all nora flooring, norament 925 serra does not contain PVC. nora.com
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1–Over The Bamboo Tree To what was once an unattractive and purely functional accessory, Anji Mountain Bamboo Rug Co. has added durability, style and eco-friendly qualities – with its Bamboo Office Chairmat. Featuring a non-slip felt backing, allowing for use on either hard floors or low-to-medium-pile carpet, each mat is made of 100 per cent Anji Mountain Bamboo, the hardest, strongest bamboo on the planet. The Chairmat is available in traditional (with lip) or rectangular (without lip), in both natural and dark cherry (shown). anjimountainbamboorugco.com
2–A Natural Based in Maryland, EcoDomo is a leader in the production of sustainable recycled leather tiles for floors and walls. Its tiles 22 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
are made entirely of natural pre-consumer leather scraps (from tanneries, furniture makers and shoe manufacturers) and such rapidly renewable resources as tree bark and natural latex. The tiles come in 12 sizes, eight standard colours and several textures. ecodomo.com 3–Sense And Sensibility Bolyu Contract’s Flair, a versatile, sophisticated and environmentally responsible commercial carpet style, is manufactured with MBDC Cradle to Cradle Certified Zeftron nylon. It is available in broadloom and tile (both contributing toward LEED points), allowing users to customize looks and ensure ease of installation. Flair comes in 12 colourways that combine earth tones with abstract bursts of coordinating shades. bolyu.com
4–Living Colour Viva Colores is the apt name for InterfaceFLOR’s new collection – its solid loop style is available in 64 colours, ranging from neutrals to brights. It’s part of the company’s Convert design platform for modular carpet that is designed and manufactured with a full spectrum of post-consumer content yarn. Viva Colores features a minimum of 34 per cent postconsumer recycled content and a minimum total recycled content of 67 per cent. interfaceflor.com
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Best in Show
Room to spare A careful tweaking of Bulthaup‘s Toronto showroom puts the focus firmly on the kitchen manufacturer’s incomparable offerings. —By John Bentley Mays
24 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
Photography by Bob Gundu
In Bulthaupâ€™s new layout, four kitchen configurations (up from three) are distributed in an open plan behind expansive windows framing the ground-floor site on two sides. The introduction of short walls perpendicular to the street helps to concentrate the viewing experience.
Best in Show
Remaining unchanged are the solid oak floor and nearly 13-foot-high ceiling. The cladding of the rear wall in steel-framed translucent glass has enhanced the lightness and brightness of the shop. Bulthaup’s b3 series – here fronted in grey aluminum – is the company’s flagship line.
26 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
Since opening in Toronto five years ago, the sleek, modernist Bulthaup showroom on King Street East has been a mecca for homeowners and designers seeking what the German manufacturer has long provided: the finest in contemporary kitchen design. But the recent $450,000 overhaul of the store by Antje Bulthaup, granddaughter of company founder Martin Bulthaup and co-owner (with husband Stefan Sybydlo) of the Toronto operation, has improved a space that some observers thought unimprovable, and provided a refreshed, chic setting for the products Bulthaup has to offer its Canadian clients. These offerings have been increased. The older scheme featured only three kitchen configurations, distributed in an open plan behind the expansive windows that frame the 1,915-square-foot groundfloor site on two sides. In the new layout, the number of kitchens has risen to four, and the space occupied by three of them has been articulated by the introduction of short walls perpendicular to King Street, which concentrate the viewing experience. The lightness and brightness of the space has been enhanced by the cladding of the rear wall in steel-framed translucent glass. Each pane is separated from the next by a flexible rubber strip, into which an s-shaped hook can be pushed and used for hanging pots and pans. The allotment of furnishings has also been changed for the better. A meeting table for 10, formerly installed in the most exposed corner of the room, where the two great glass walls of the building meet, has been replaced by a setting for just six. And an informal conversation area has been eliminated altogether in the new plan. These quiet changes, especially the removal of the living-room ensemble, have the effect of pushing the kitchen displays to centre stage, and reinforcing the mood of a working atelier throughout the store. The only elements that have remained unchanged from the shopâ€™s previous incarnation are the solid oak floor, the nearly 13-foot-high ceiling and the office area. On display in this renovated space are excellent examples of the three Bulthaup lines. The b1 version, which appears here in white beside the King Street window, is what Antje calls â€œthe essential kitchen, less expensive and built in. There is no compromise on quality, but not much March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 27
choice.” (You’ll pay roughly the price of a new mid-sized car for b1.) The simplicity of this model, with its long, unfussy lines, smooth corners and ergonomic ease, makes it particularly appropriate for the restricted spaces many of Toronto’s downtown condominium-dwellers inhabit. Bulthaup’s b2 is the most exciting and unusual of the firm’s three lines. Designed by the Viennese studio EOOS, this series has been inspired by the craftsman’s workbench and workshop, and it seeks to recall the kitchen’s ancient identity as a zone of hard creative work. The two core items in the set are displayed in the middle of the showroom: a modular stainless steel bench with everything one needs for preparation, cooking and washing up; and a tool cabinet for neatly stowing basic cookware and tableware, appliances and utensils. Gone are the traditional cupboards hanging over counter and stove; b2 is rather a kitchen for postmodern living: minimal in style, maximal in efficiency and sheer urban attitude. Two kitchens in Bulthaup’s flagship b3 line – the Mercedes-Benz option, in terms of price – are featured here. Both are large and both honour the Canadian kitchen as the place where the family cooks and eats most of the time, and where guests are entertained on all but the most ceremonial 28 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
The south-facing showroom is often flooded with light. Every quarter, the work of a different artist will be featured; inaugurating the space is “The Philadelphia Experiment,” a vivid photo-based piece by Bob Gundu. Bulthaup’s b2 (opposite, at left) comprises a modular stainless steel bench with everything anyone needs for preparation, cooking and washing up, and a tool cabinet for neatly storing basic cookware and tableware.
occasions. Bulthaup’s massive “monoblock,” an island of seamless stainless steel and aluminum drawers fronted in smoked oak and lined with linoleum, commands the centre of one kitchen here, positioned toward the east end of the showroom. Both kitchens on display are furnished with a panoply of convenient, ergonomically designed cabinets, drawers and shelves. The new space, however, is not just about kitchens: Bulthaup Toronto will feature a work by a different artist every quarter of the year. To inaugurate the renovated shop, the owners chose Bob Gundu’s large, vivid photo-based piece entitled “The Philadelphia Experiment.”
Bulthaup kitchens are “really for people who are conscious about themselves, how they want to live,” Antje says. For such people, the showroom is key. “They don’t buy only a product. They buy the atmosphere in the place.” c I
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 29
Something new is in the air.
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Best in Show
Good, better, best There were no bad choices at the 2009 edition of Habitat Valencia. —By Erin Donnelly
It was all about tough choices in Valencia this past September. When I was treated to three days in the Spanish city to attend Ideas&Pasión Feria Habitat Valencia, it really felt as if I were being pulled in all directions. Each morning, it pained every self-indulgent bone in my body to pry myself from my beautiful hotel room at the Palau De Le Mar. Equally excruciating was extricating myself from the breakfast room, and the unlimited supply of unbelievably fresh and delicious Valencia orange juice. And though it was what I was there for, I have to admit that getting on the bus and heading to the fairgrounds, and work, seemed like a terrible insult. With a beautiful day in a beautiful city waiting outside the windowless convention centre halls that would be waiting for me, even the promise of pretty things couldn’t stop me from feeling I was getting a raw deal. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that there
was plenty at the show that was as bright and beautiful as what was waiting for attendees outside at the end of each day. The new outdoor section, which created a garden oasis right in the convention centre, was well worth checking out; and the expansive Sidi section, exhibiting new products from associated manufacturers, was certainly a highlight of the show. But, as always, it was the Nude exhibit (the section for new creators) that outshone the rest. Bigger than ever, the section showed about 30 exhibitors, all of which I couldn’t wait to feature. And so the tough choices continued back at home, with the struggle to decide which of my many favourites to include in this show report.
Cave-in Stalactite is a hand-blown glass lighting fixture from designer Marina Rodriguez and her eponymous studio, designbymarina. Named for its obvious inspiration, the light shines through, rather than into, the tubes, which are closed at the top to prevent dust from getting in. The product is intended to be manufactured from recycled glass. designbymarina.net March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 31
1-Love is all around FlexibleLove furniture uses an increasingly familiar accordion-like, honeycomb structure to create durable furniture. Made from recycled paper and recycled wood waste, the line’s name comes from the idea of a “flexible love-seat” that could hold from one to as many as 16 individuals; changing length and shape with a simple pull at each end. flexiblelove.com
2-Bone yard Created by Jon Marin and Àlex Jiménez of Nut Creatives, the award-winning Bones is a flat-packed seating solution that can be assembled as the user wishes. The spidery legs, or “ribs,” are strung together with a metal axle as wanted, and with the use of longer rods and more cutouts, longer compositions can be created, for indoor or outdoor use. 3-Go for broke Also from Nut Creatives, Relaja was developed in the Canary Islands. Upon seeing a surplus of broken stone slabs wasted by construction companies, the two designed this modular outdoor bench to make use of otherwise rejected materials. The designers intend for the 32 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
benches to be built as part of a program to support people at risk of social exclusion. nutcreatives.com
4-Hang ‘em high Wanting something fun to counter their not-so-serious “serious office furniture,” the folks at Es-Stres, Estudio De Diseno, created Mus. Handsdown my favorite thing of the entire show, Mus is exactly what it looks like: a bat house. Made of MDF and finished in a range of matte lacquer colours, Mus is hung, upside-down, by repurposed leather straps. 5-Both sides now Es-Stres also introduced Gaveta, which puts a fairly literal twist on office furniture. The line includes a file cabinet, with drawers on perpendicular sides – a bit of a headscratcher when the drawers are closed. The other piece is an L-shaped desk, with one set of drawers on what might seem naturally to be the outside of the desk, and another set on perpendicular sides. estudioestres.com
6-Shine on Shineout is a collection of mirrors from InnEdit – InnoArea Design Editions. With new technology in plastics and lighting, it was time to revisit the concept of the backlit mirror. In doing so InnEdit created a line of wall and table mirrors, with a lit perimeter that turns on when the mirror is touched. For those who want to keep the surface pristine, cable switches are incorporated on both models, and a motion sensor option is offered on the wall version. innoarea.com
7-Class act New from Capolavori Estudi is Class, a modular system for small spaces. There are nine pieces that make up the system: two vertical modules, three horizontal, and a collection of “envelopes” or drawers. With these components, the system offers infinite constructive solutions, without need for tools, acting as a bench, a TV stand, a coffee table or even a dresser. capolavori.es
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1-Hold this Capdell showed off the new Culmen table, for hospitality installations. Suitable for indoor or outdoor use, the legs feature adjustable cleats to create great stability on whatever surface the table is placed. Available in square, round and semi-circle configurations, the defining feature of each is the two integrated “claws” that offer a visible place to store belongings, such as purses and coats. capdell.com
2-Springing up The Air is a simple two-seater couch designed by Daniel Garcia Sanchez. Composed of durable black elastic and steel, the Air looks pretty heavy duty. Clearly suited to indoor or outdoor use, the comfy piece 34 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
has a little more spring to it than one expects, gives the user a light, weightless feel. danielgarciasanchez.com
3-Two is better than one Moma is a new indoor/outdoor series from Vondom that combines the functions of a table and a flowerpot. The line is made up of four pieces: High (stool height), Medium (as tall as an average chair’s seat) and Low, which is complemented by the Puf seating element, at the same level. A self watering system can be incorporated. vondom.com
Best in Show
Aiming high With the theme of The Ultimate, the Interior Design Show 2010 set its sights skyward. —By Karolina Olechnowicz
The Interior Design Show 2010 did its best to wow design professionals and consumers alike with this year’s theme: The Ultimate. Seeming quite comfortable in its new location, the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the “ultimate” design show offered the crème de la crème of design from the moment visitors passed through the doors. Suspended from the hall’s ceilings, like fruit waiting to be picked, was Bruno Billio’s installation of Vitra’s Vegetal chairs. And the ultimate dream car, the Audi R8 V10, was on display as a more forbidden fruit. From the practical to the fantastical, IDS had something to satisfy everyone’s appetite. In line with the show’s motif, four teams of Canada’s top design talents each created their interpretation of the Ultimate space. From the Calvin Klein Euphoria–inspired his and hers bathroom by Arren Williams to the luxurious art and detail-infused lobby of the Bisha Hotel and Residence by Munge Leung and Charles Khabouth, the spaces were a must-see. Rolling Hills, by the Ministry of the Interior’s Jason MacIsaac, was like an experiential journey through a wooden castle of natural materials. Essentially three spaces joined by a passageway, Rolling Hills was a synergy of architecture and abstract landscape. The walls and ceilings were a combination of a variety of solid woods. Each of the conical spaces was of a different height and had open ceilings to cast light into the space.
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Drew Mandel’s cool and calming installation was designed “as an abstracted architectural journey,” in the words of the Toronto architect. “It unfolds as a series of interconnected spaces and forms, animated by movement, light and material texture.” The construction materials were largely reused, including the living wall plantings, walnut veneer panels and stone cladding (used here as floor finish material). Says Mandel, “The design process was an experimental reprieve from more practical office work, with the intent to strip design down to the almost indefinable.” In addition to the Ultimate concept spaces, more than 300 exhibitors and design features filled the show, which branched out into a new initiative this year: the Toronto International Design Festival. Spread over a full week, the inaugural fest encompassed more than 20 events and exhibitions across the city.
Clockwise from below Drew Mandelâ€™s Ultimate space; Vegetal chairs by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec for Vitra; Rolling Hills by Jason MacIsaac.
Starlight The Moooi Raimond light, designed by mathematician Raimond Puts, is as captivating to look at as a starlit sky. Transparent lenses are specifically designed to emit warm white light and spread it in every direction. A series of spheres in the fixture transmit current throughout, and LED terminals join the paths to create an atmospheric ambience. The Raimond light is made of stainless steel and polycarbonate and has a discrete, transparent supply cable. It comes in three diameters of 35, 24 and 16.9 inches. moooi.com nienkamper.com
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amber plyboo with solid Russian olive drawer front from a naturally felled tree; American black walnut with white lacquer interior and black walnut drawer front (naturally felled); eco-friendly teak taboo veneer with solid reclaimed teak drawer front. asedodesigns.com
1–Go With The Flo The Flo chair by Sia Zanjani from After 6 Design is made of 36 layers of laminated plywood, cut with the precision of CNC technology. It appears smooth and sleek, with the lines in the plywood curving softly around the contours of the sitting area. The chair’s hollow shape allows for storage of the accompanying footrest/side table, which tucks neatly within. The laminated glass backrest is removable for space-saving purposes. after6studio.com
2–Kid-friendly Specially made with children in mind, Play is the newest low-temperature radiator from
Jaga Climate Systems. With its soft, rounded corners, it is safer than traditional rads – as its surface is cool to the touch and its heating components out of reach of small, curious fingers. Play combines five individually polyurethanepainted MDF boards in a simple, easy-to-detach design, and can be fitted to either wall or floor. It comes in white or black, or in colour combinations. jaga-canada.com 3–Infinitely alright Inspired by the TorontoDominion Centre, Michal Maciej Bartosik created Dominion, a series of light objects. A similar grid to the one in the TD Centre is located in the base and acts as the light source that gets reflected from each face of the fixture. The grid appears to infinitely stretch beyond the fixture’s dimensions. The five faces of
Dominion objects are coated with a UV compound allowing for a continuous reflective envelope on the inside, while maintaining transparency from the outside. The reflective ceiling plane creates a mirrored double reflection, parallel to the original. Look for the Dominion fixtures to be sold by Klaus by Nienkämper. nienkamper.com
4–Caving the way The Stalac coffee table, by the Practice of Everyday Design, is a design derived from the organic forms of stalactites. Using a natural cave as a model, the Stalac coffee table’s rectangular section is designed like the cave ceiling with the table legs protruding down like stalactites. The table is made of fibreglass, measures 23.6 by 35.4 inches, and is 11.8 inches tall. everydaydesign.ca
5–Side Effect Aaron Asedo of New Jersey– based Asedo Designs specializes in modern furniture forms that integrate eco-friendly materials with a natural, craft edge. His series of side tables is the first in a line of limitededition products he hopes to introduce. Shown, from top:
6–Column of light With his new Luminous Column series, Gregor Herman – who has been working with glass for 25 years and runs his own hot-glass studio in Toronto – explores how light interacts with various textures of glass. Each custom-made chandelier is site-specific and functions as both lighting and sculpture. Always looking forward, Herman is developing new colours and shapes, exploring mixed media, and experimenting with ideas for a room divider or screen and an outdoor canopy. gregorherman.com
7–Almost famous Katherine Morley’s Low Profile Bowls pay homage to undercelebrated Canadians. Each bowl base is shaped to resemble the profile of a notable national (shown are Celia Franca, Pierre Berton, Jane Jacobs and Chief Dan George), carefully chosen for their accomplishments and contributions to Canadian culture. The angles and curves of the faces sweep outward and upward toward the oval rim, giving each handmade earthenware bowl a distinct shape. katherinemorley.com
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 39
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Sparkle and shine Lux Design gives a pair of university dental offices the old razzle-dazzle. â€”By David Steiner
Photography by Amanda Scott and Jason Cremasco/See Photography
March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 41
42 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
Overleaf In Dr. Garber’s McMaster University dental clinic, a large, ornately framed mirror opens up the space, while sheer white curtains allow light to filter softly through. The marbletopped desk is fronted in mirror and black metal. Opposite A pair of custom chandeliers at McMaster add a touch of glamour. Above At the University of Waterloo location, ducts and overhead services are left exposed and painted white.
If you’re a university student and your teeth hurt, or need a polish, you’ll want a dentist nearby. Students are busy, their mobility is frequently restricted and schools often help pay dental costs. With this captive audience in mind, Dr. Dean Garber opened two dental clinics: one at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont., and the other at the University of Waterloo (also in Ontario). Both are located in their respective university student centres and neither are what you’d expect. A typical dental office is a strange kind of space, neither cozy – given its intimate purpose – nor stylish, which might be expected, considering the high cost of service. Up front is a reception area likely displaying outdated magazines, with workaday drilling rooms somewhere at the back. The decor is often prosaic: beige paint, a plastic laminate reception desk, an ominous wall of charts and records and inexpensive drop-in-panel ceiling tiles everywhere above. Garber created Campus Dentist so students could get their teeth attended to
in an atmosphere of “sparkle, shine and glamour,” in the words of his interior designer, Isabelle Glinka. Lux Design, Glinka’s boutique design firm, was hired to turn the bones of each space – already fitted with the necessary walls, chairs and plumbing – into a kind of after-hours dentist lounge. Garber anticipated that students would be taken by “bright, white and simple,” with sassy accessories and a sophisticated vibe. In both clinics, a small area is made spacious by the exposed concrete slab above. Ducts and overhead services are left exposed and painted either white (Waterloo) or black (McMaster – where the slab is 20 feet above, making the clinic feel far larger than its 485 square feet). The clinics share a distinct visual identity despite their different size and shape: blizzard white walls, a custom reception desk with a mirrored front and a few Philippe Starck furnishings. Both entries are marked by a large mirror in an ornate frame and sheer white curtains, hung against the white walls, making March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 43
Tktk Tktk everything feel softer. A perfect white plaster hand, cupped or pointing, is mounted on a wall of every operatory as a quirky coat hook. For glamour – often absent from the T-shirt- and sweatpantclad university crowd – a series of Baroque-inspired chandeliers are hung in the short hallways. The chandeliers at McMaster, custom made by Bob King in St. Catharines, Ont., generated the clinics’ style. Garber ordered them before any design work began – “I have a chandelier fetish,” he confesses – and showed them to Glinka, so she and her team would understand the theme. During the initial technical design, Garber requested chandeliers for task lighting. It wasn’t feasible, though, so giant fluorescent light boxes were hung above each operatory chair, contradicting the delicacy of the rest of the decor. It would have been magnificent, had it been possible, for students to lie back and have their dental work done by the light of an ornate glass chandelier. c I
What could be more appropriate for a dental office than the Tooth Stool by Philippe Starck, here in triplicate? The low lounger sofa, covered in a stylized metallic damask, was custom made to fit a curving wall in the Waterloo location.
44 CANADIAN INTERIORS March/April 2010
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Winter cheer —By David Lasker
Leeza, the Montreal-based hard-surfacing specialist, chased away winter blahs by throwing a Seven Sins–themed party at the Spoke Club in Toronto.
John Christakos, co-founder and CEO of hip furniture maker Blu Dot (based in Minneapolis), and Urban Mode owner Myrlene Sundberg celebrated the launch of Blu Dot’s new home at the venerable Toronto design boutique.
1—Robert King, partner at Norma King Design; Prolific Marketing’s Linda Zuber; and interior designer Richard Eppstadt. 2—Guests would down shots of Sambuca, look at the number at the bottom of the shot glass, and body-paint the same-numbered spots on models Anna and Shannon. 3—Leeza’s Mark Hanna, president; Terry Lynn Young, Ryan Tisdall and Kelly Bates, sales; Mark Murphy, sales manager; and Kathy Ware, marketing manager. 4—Shawn Newman of One Shot Events; Leeza’s Tom Nemeth; and Andrew Pike and Justin Kersten of Andrew Pike Interiors. 5—Gail Pearson Calluori and Arlene Williams, account managers at Prolific Marketing, flank interior designer Trevor Kruse of Hudson Kruse.
1—Joan Redfern, CEO, Redfern Promotions (promoting home decor products), and interior designer Rafaell Cabrera. 2—Mike Kingsborough, creative lead at interactive design studio Kolody; Matthew Rutherford, regional sales manager, Design Deli; interior decorator Sasha Wright; and Ben Leoni, art director, Design Pilot. 3—Urban Mode owner Myrlene Sundberg and guest of honour John Christakos, co-founder and CEO, Blu Dot.
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Interior Design Show
Knoll sponsored a Design Exchange lecture on mid-century design hero Eero Saarinen by Brian Lutz (author of Yale University Press’s new The Furniture of Eero Saarinen), after which everyone decamped to George Brown College’s School of Design to toast its Saarinen exhibit.
New venue; new vibe. This year, the Interior Design Show moved to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, a more cozy, intimate setting than Exhibition Place.
1—Carolyn Laidley Arn, sales rep at Lennard Commercial Realty; architect Sean Lawrence of Kohn Architects; architect Thomas Tampold of Tampold Architects; Esther Shipman, architecture and design curator at Cambridge Galleries in Cambridge and wife of Lawrence; and Barb Woolley, design director at visual communications agency Hambly & Woolley. 2—Author Brian Lutz; Luigi Ferrara, director, George Brown College School of Design; and Knoll’s Greg Rapier, regional manager, Canada, and Fabiana Stubrich, director of business development
1—Jewelry designer Rabie Matar, society hairdresser Jie Matar, and interior designer Moe Razi. 2—At the VIP lounge’s champagne reception: CBC TV’s Steven and Chris co-stars Chris Hyndman and Steven Sabados flank former CityTV news anchor Anne Mroczkowski. 3—Klaus and Beatrix Nienkämper. 4—Loraine Buyar, A&D manager at Teknion; interior designer and Kasian principal Dean Matsumoto; and Kasian senior designer Liana Butt. 5—The Cupcakery’s sweet Cupcake Lady (a.k.a. Courtney Douglas). 6—Enrico Bressan, co-founder, art director and CEO of Los Angeles–based design company Artecnica, and designer and Artecnica collaborator Tord Boontje flank Spanish artist and designer Jaime Hayón. 7—Eric McClelland, partner at interior designers Fleur-de-Lis and Room boutique on Eglinton West; Rob Jarschke, team leader, Figure3; and Jarschke’s wife, Corinne Drobot, marketing manager, PR, at HOK. 8—John Tong of 3rd Uncle Design and designer/ developer Del Terrelonge.
1 March/April 2010 CANADIAN INTERIORS 47
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Baby, it’s cold inside Canada’s first retail walk-in freezer. —By Michael Totzke
How cool is this: Ruscio Studio, the Montreal-based design studio, has made history by creating Canada’s premier retail walk-in freezer. Working closely with the marketing team at Mark’s Work Warehouse in Edmonton, Ruscio developed the T-Max Freezer for the apparel store’s location in the city’s South Edmonton Common retail centre (the first of Mark’s new Clothes That Work concept stores). It allows users to simulate extreme cold temperatures in order to test winter garments for sale in the store. “Our product developers and buyers have designed some innovative technologies into our outerwear,” says Mark’s president Tom Ranieri. “We wanted a way for the customer to test how these innovations work, in-store, hopefully helping them to make an informed purchase decision.” (To that end, they also installed a footwear test ramp, covered with different kinds of flooring and roofing materials.) Says Ruscio Studio president Robert Ruscio. “We strive in our designs to provide a way for the customer to have a really authentic experience in a tactile environment. Since Mark‘s slogan is Clothes That Work, this was the perfect opportunity for customers to test how well the clothes work in extreme temperatures.” Straight-forward instructions are posted on the outside of the state-of-the50 CANADIAN INTERIORS MARCH/APRIL 2010
art, 7.8-by-7.8-foot freezer. Once inside, the customer sees an adjustable temperature gauge, which he or she can set to whatever sub-zero temperature he or she needs to withstand. A pair of fans blow icy cold air to simulate conditions up to -40 degrees Celcius, while an ice-block step allows the customer to test a pair of serious winter boots. An interior camera allows the customer to view his or her own frosty image via a live feed to an LCD screen positioned in front of him or her. Simple buttons and dials make the experience an uncomplicated one, while clever design elements (a frosted-glass acrylic wall and self-frosting mirror) add a touch of engaging realism. A vertical grab bar, located adjacent to the ice block, assures the retailer that the customer’s safety is top priority. “The response has been overwhelmingly positive,” says Ranieri. “The freezer is being used as expected by all types of customers. We will be retrofitting a number of existing stores across Canada with this new concept and other innovation-testing features. Adds Ruscio, “If retail design is about creating a shopping experience, this one is certainly engaging and memorable, as customers have a story to tell that goes along with their purchased items.” c I
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