Olson Kundig is known for their residential masterpieces. Now the firm is creating environments for collectors of artistic masterpieces. When Interior Design Hall of Fame member Tom Kundig first met Rodman Primack, the executive director of Design Miami/Basel , they collaborated on a residential project. A couple years down the road, as the Swiss design fair hit its 10th anniversary, Primack turned again to his colleague to design a respite from the madness of the festival. For six days last June, the 4,000-square-foot pavilion, Outpost Basel, housed a restaurant, a champagne bar, and a lounge. Kundig specified beech bricks, charred to a rich black hue for the primary material. A signature industrial intervention, an iron-wheeled X door marked the entrance. The allusion to the number 10 continued in a repetitive x-pattern wrapping the exterior. Of course, as this was Design Miami/Basel, the space was not devoid of artistic flair. Artist Glymmer, also Seattle based, designed an interactive lighting installation to entertain visitors.
Shortly thereafter, coprincipal and fellow Hall of Fame member Jim Olson was chosen to design the lounge for the inaugural Seattle Art Fair , back in their hometown. Opening July 30, the space was appropriately titled Basecamp. The open-air pavilion featured local materials, prominently featuring three 18-foot-tall open-frame luminous towers sheathed in red fabric. Evergreens, herbs, and flowers lined the perimeter, lending a distinctly natural feel to the man-made space.