From place to headspace
People are just half aware of their surroundings while almost everything can be defined as a space, or place. It is those ‘quarters’ that have a great deal of influence on our pace.
Places, spaces, are they following our paces?
Spaces give us sense of direction (highway, airport, train station), streamline us (entrances, corridors, exits), condition us (university, prison, church), enthuse us (cinema, theatre, club, gallery), give a sense of belonging (gents club, rotary, sorority), safeguard us and care for us (home, shelter, hospital, hospice).
All of this while we spend most of our time floating around in a non-tangible and the most eclectic decorated place ever, the Internet. We now spend more time here than sleeping. Eight hours and forty minutes which is 20 minutes more than the average sleep! Added to this is an average of two-and a half hours a week ‘simply online’ while on the move.
Do panic, it’s organic!
Most spaces get blueprinted while the Internet just grew and propelled… organically. Domain after domain glued to a string that formed its own crazy DNA. It is the only place we are trimming subsequently. A world -mind you- that is getting better organized by the day. Better secured, filled, filtered, steered and even shrunken (figuratively) to pocket size to be taken to another place! While our bodies have been left on the couch, our brain navigates to this smart intangible place that will grow towards managing our direct environment (IoT).
But our need for experience grows, the good old law of the tangible…exploring an area. Having orientation in time and space. We have become world travellers without the survival skills…we are being run over, bumped into and crossed by on the street glancing at a screen. We need that dynamic interaction with the world around, its tangible space and us. And the nooks that are designed just for us. Maybe we should merge both…gosh…who would be the architect, who does the interior design?
Google had led us to navigate, what is next?
Blinking *Online – Offline*
There is much talk about Google’s anticipated new headquarters planned for N1C Kings Cross, London. Which will be a marker in time -that we are working in different ways- and the physical environment we work in, is reacting to this. There is a shift from the corporate center to the collaborative campus. As well as a blurring of work-life, for those that don’t want to visit the office every day, and sabbatical sub-stations for those who want to travel.
Within the world of retail, the physical environment is equally adapting to the digital space. The store has a different function, one of entertainment, and this is generating a new job role, that of ‘brand curator’. Fusing brand, visual merchandising, design, hospitality and art. (We would love to speak to you if are a brand that have just created such a role, or if you have just taken on this role!)
Collaborative retail arena
We mention ‘collaborative’ above, and stand by collaborative engagement in the new workspace. Collaborations in the retail arena have been a buzzword of recent years- and a successful one in many circles. But it now needs an upgrade- it needs more depth than just two brands hoping to generate traction feeding off each other.
Birds of a feather flock together
The communal space has a great strength and power. We naturally flock, and the workplace and brain focused spaces need to allow old functions to prosper, but take on new content and appearance.
Will we see new physical spaces in the future? Very new and different ones with purpose and content? We think so. The essence of current human space-needs distilled and presented in new exciting spaces and formats.
Just like the Internet…
By Marilijn Boumeester & Gregor Jackson of BBGP