A word from Elissaveta Marinova:
It feels a little ironic to be writing these words on April Fools Day but the news is quite real indeed – OnOffice has a new editor!
Two weeks into this electrifying new role, and here I am writing my first letter, smiling to myself as you do when exciting times lie ahead. I’m beyond thrilled to be taking up the OnOffice reins and I hope you will hop along for the ride.
It would be brash of me to take credit for the full issue you’re about to read. This was a two-woman job and I’d like to give former editor Helen Parton a big nod for starting what I finished.
Now, onto the more important things. Our cover this month is graced by the charismatic Lucy Kurrein who is taking on the of ce seating market with her eponymous Lucy Sofa for Offecct. After collaborating with renowned home furnishing brands like SCP and Molinari, Kurrein is now the latest designer to bring residential touches to the workplace, and we have a hunch this won’t be her last contribution to office furniture. Read Dominic Lutyens’ profile of Kurrein.
In our OnSite section, our features editor Ayla Angelos transports us to Milan, where Piuarch has converted the old Caproni aircraft factory into Gucci’s new headquarters. Rising above the seesaw outline of brick-clad hangars, is Piuarch’s most notable modern intervention: a six-storey, louvred glass tower where the of ce space is located.
Rather timely for Salone, if I may say so myself. Elsewhere, we take a look at yet another intriguing conversion, across the pond this time, of a 1909 horse stable into a contemporary office on San Francisco’s waterfront. Much like Gucci’s HQ, the new workspace, designed by Feldman Architecture, retains the character of its original structure while subtly introducing contemporary elements that, at once, contrast and camouflage with the existing.
Our OnTop story this month is Hawkins\Brown’s new project for UCL at Here East, the former media centre of 2012 Olympics in London’s Queen Elizabeth Park. The site includes high-tech facilities like structural testing rigs, robotic cells and fabrication equipment, with a focus on hardwearing materials such as plywood and concrete.
Finally, Orms has been busy at work reviving an underappreciated London landlmark, No1 New Oxford Street. ‘Our design has sought to transform the familiar landmark into a distinctive and stylish building,’ says Orms co-owner John McRae.
Speaking of surfaces, for this month’s flooring special, we explore the latest work- space flooring trends with designs from Domus, Desso, Hakwood, Amtico and more. And in OnOff, Rebecca Hoh-Hale looks at the curious collaboration between Andree Cooke, Michael Marriot and young pupils on the making of King Alfred School’s common room.
Finally, if my name is too long to remember, Ellie will do just fine (you’re welcome).
This month we’re saying goodbye to longstanding OnOffice editor Helen Parton who has joined Grand Designs as deputy editor. Helen, on behalf of your old OnOf ce crew: thank you for your devotion and fantastic sense of humour. We wish you all the best in your new venture!