Plenty of greenery and sunlight bedeck this office
This elegant and brilliantly lit Bangalore workspace of Obvious, a product and strategy consultancy , is as much the brainchild of MYVN as it is of the clients. “The experience of working with these clients has been absolutely invaluable. We’ve learnt a lot while developing the design alongside them,” says Elayaraja Mayavan of MYVN. “The client approached us to help them decide on an office space to accommodate their growing team and ease their transition from working in an independent house, into an office environment.”
“We were faced with a few challenges at the site, with its extremely low ceiling and sharp corners which made our planning complex. Nonetheless, there were plenty of balconies all around, bringing in abundant light and fresh air,” says Mayavan. This 6,500-square-feet workspace is predominantly open, and has been designed to comfortably accommodate 25 team members with almost double the space occupancy usually allocated per person. “The client wanted openness and a spacious facility. The more capacious a space is, the better the quality of work.”
The space is segregated into 3 zones: the Community zone, Transition zone & Deep work zone. The reception features a wide-ribbed fluted glass wall, that offers a glimpse of the space beyond. On either sides of the reception, are the Community and Deep-work zones. The community zone is essentially for team activities. The common dining is in this zone, which doubles up as an event space for hosting specific design shows curated by the Obvious team. A dry pantry is provided in this space, while a bigger kitchen has been fitted out within one of the balconies overlooking this space.
Transition zone houses the meeting rooms, a library and flexible workspaces. The architecture firm inserted movable, scribble walls in this space to provide privacy and impromptu discussion points for the team. “The prevailing theme is white with a touch of wood (birch ply), throughout the space. We carefully selected the fluted glass for this project, as it played a vital role in determining the varying degrees of privacy within the space. Even the light cement grey floor has been chosen to subtly blend with the theme. All tables have been custom-designed. Right from standing tables to workstations, with areas specifically allocated for plants, we worked in tandem with the Obvious team to get it all done to everyone’s specifications,” says Mayavan.
The Deep Work zone is a pristine white space, with pops of vibrant green breaking the colour monotony. A long walkway, highlighted by a birch ply ceiling with bespoke linear lighting guides the user to the wider workspaces inside. This is a space for chance encounters and interactions, shielded by the translucent fluted glass screen on one side and the open workspace on the other. The work tables have been designed keeping in mind the flexibility required in the workplace today. Height-adjustable tables with simple birch ply tops and white finished legs can be moved around the space according to the needs of the team.
The lounge or library is a retreat from the employees. It is a restful space with plush seating, sourced from SPIN, where one can get a quick shut eye or a read, and head back to work, refreshed.
“The clients love to host design-related events and hence wanted a space for that. We designed the dining such that it can convert into a gathering space. We consciously added the grid-lighting to bring that element of informality into an otherwise sober space,” avers Mayavan.
A larger kitchen with cooking facilities is built further down, in the balcony. Just outside the dining is a small lounge with signature furniture from Sandeep Sangaru—the Ring Sofa. In an attempt to encourage local crafts and artisans the space has plenty of elements and furniture procured locally, adding to the character of the workplace.
The workshop area within the Community zone has been designed specially for in-depth interactions between the engineering and design team, nurturing hands-on working styles for both.
The bathrooms deserve a special mention. The user moves from a white, airy space into a completely dark, black and brooding space. “Making these spaces completely black, with just the mirror being highlighted by a stretch ceiling light brings the focus back only to the user. We wanted them to relax in this intimate space, and be themselves,” avers Mayavan.
Plenty of greenery and sunlight bedeck the workspace. “The great part of this design is that the clients began to add their own stamp of individuality to the spaces, like sticking small polaroid photographs on glass partitions; writing on the glass, bringing in elements by local craftsmen into the space; thereby owning the design itself,” concludes Mayavan.