Working together

The 2010 edition of our annual office issue celebrates the success of collaboration: designers working with contract furnishing companies, tenants working with landlords, architects working with designers, bosses working with employees. When the true spirit of collaboration is fostered, the results can be extraordinary.

My NeoCon report (“Happy days,” page 25) is a cornucopia of the fruits of collaboration — including Scott Wilson and Minimal’s smart SW_1 conference collection for Coalesse; EOOS’s refined Cahoots line of modular furniture for Keilhauer; and Rodarte’s high-fashion upholstery and drapery patterns for Knoll Luxe.

The two Toronto offices we feature in this issue show the remarkable results of just the right amount of cooks stirring up a rich and nourishing broth. First up is the new Telus House, which amalgamates the telecommunication company’s employees from across the city (“Come together,” page 34). When developer Menkes began negotiating to bring Telus into the building as the main tenant, it asked &Co Architects to reshape the building’s original design (by Adamson Architects) to suit Telus’s “Future Friendly” corporate workspace concept — a concept developed by Telus’s national design partner, Kasian, whose members were concurrently working out the interiors. Says Kasian’s Crystal Graham, “It was great to be able to collaborate with the architects and the result is a really integrated design.” Next up is the new T.O. office of In-sync, the international research consultancy firm specializing in bio-pharmacy branding (“Food for thought,” page 41). At its heart is The Kitchen, a large, airy space where bosses and employees eat together, meet together and hang out together. Everyone in the company — including the four senior partners — gets approximately the same-sized personal space. Says interior designer Chris Wright of Figure3, who designed the colourful, idiosyncratic office, “In-sync’s work philosophy is very creative. Their people do highly concentrated work on their own, but come together to collaborate and brainstorm on projects. It’s a very social company.”

Speaking of collaboration, we at Canadian Interiors recently formed a new partnership with the Interior Designers of Canada. We are now the official magazine of the IDC. As such, we will publish the association’s official quarterly magazine, Dimensions — featuring industry trends, along with association news and information — inside CI. You’ll find the premier issue of IDC’s Dimensions following page 20. CI

Michael Totzke [email protected]