Both Sides Now
Interior Design February 2001
Mayer Rus -- Interior Design, 2/1/2001 12:00:00 AM
THROUGHOUT OUR NEARLY 70-YEAR HISTORY, Interior Design has embraced the broadest range of commercial and residential interiors. We show houses and hospitals, apartments and offices, boutiques and restaurants, courtrooms and corporate headquarters. We've even been known to show a few ritual baths and doggy day spas. This is our guiding principle of broad applicability: a hotel can furnish ideas for an executive suite, a living room for a lobby, a kitchen for a work station. The way a baseboard meets a carpet can suggest the way a cornice might frame a skylight. A sconce may inspire a handrail.
Industry research confirms the increasingly cross-disciplinary approach of most contemporary design firms. Nine out ten designers consider themselves generalists who work on more than one type of project every year. Even those designers who specialize in residential work tend to undertake at least a few projects outside the domestic arena.
This month in Interior Design, we've decided to cut to the chase (or is that chaise?). We've identified four design firms that embody the versatility and vitality necessary to successfully negotiate the occasionally restrictive boundaries of design practice. Each of these firms is represented by two recent projects: one residential, the other commercial. The point of this exercise is not to create any artificial analogies, but simply to explore the intriguing cross-pollination of ideas and materials. The places at which the residential and commercial projects diverge are as important as the areas in which they overlap.