A Clean Palette
Mark Oller and Victoria Kirk of MOVK create a refreshing interior for a sushi restaurant off Union Square.
Jen Renzi -- Interior Design, 9/1/2001 12:00:00 AM
Sushi neophytes and enthusiasts alike can find common ground at Sushi Jones, a new Manhattan café that offers both Americanized (chicken Caesar roll, anyone?) and staunchly traditional renditions of the cuisine. Just as the menu caters to both eastern and western tastes, so too does the décor. "The challenge was how to evoke 'sushi' but make it feel American and accessible," says principal Victoria Kirk of the multidisciplinary design firm MOVK. Kirk and co-principal Mark Oller referenced dining rituals and eating environments from both cultures in the whimsical, 1,200-sq.-ft. space. Stainless-steel details are "a subtle, metaphorical reference" to the tools of the trade (i.e. razor-sharp knives), notes Oller, while origami-like cabinetry juxtaposes high-tech white Corian against panels of quartered French aspen. The spatial progression from the front order-station to the rear pick-up counter is emphasized by a 23-ft.-long lenticular element, "a play on American commercialism," says Kirk. "We wanted take the pedestrian technology and make it more artful." The colorful graphic is embedded in a padded Xorel wall, which serves as a backrest to the polypropylene-upholstered banquette below. "The project came off with great cohesion," marvels the owner, who—thanks to the successful design—has his sights set on brand expansion.
Credit is extended to Ricardo Marquez.