Silver Curtain Office

Munich, Germany
Florian Holzherr, Kim Fohmann

This two-story office extension designed by BUERO WAGNER is located in the backyard of a turn-of-the-century building near the Isar River in the Au district of Munich. The continuing demand for new space in Munich is increasing the pressure on existing buildings in particular. In the search for further re-densification, the basement floors are increasingly coming into focus.

In the office conversion in Munich, the basement was also opened up and connected to the first floor via an air space. The new unit can be accessed via fixtures made of galvanised steel gratings. Windows were extended into the basement to provide adequate lighting. Silver curtains made of aluminium vapour barriers on the back conceal the kitchen, storage shelves, as well as the passages to the toilet and to the storage rooms. At the same time, the reflective surfaces help to relax the existing lighting situation. Curtains made out of bubble wrap provide privacy while allowing sufficient light coming into the interior. The building stock was preserved as far as possible and only the surfaces were refurbished. In the basement, the concrete floor slab was exposed. On the ground floor, the oak parquet was refinished.

The furniture is custom-made and has been realised exclusively from galvanised steel gratings. The steel furniture and fixtures were welded and have no screw connections, which further enhances the abstract nature and minimalism of the objects. Shelves and lighting were built from galvanised cable trays. Right next to the unit there is an apartment offering direct access as well as various visual relations with the commercial space. The project was realised during the coronavirus pandemic and makes an intertwining of living and working in one place possible.

The interventions were implemented from a canon of industrial materials: aluminium vapour barriers, bubble wrap, galvanised grating, galvanised steel, galvanised cable trays and recycled composite foam. These conventional, banal materials take on a new value through their processing and use in a context that is alien to them, and lend the interior an abstract, temporary character that deliberately leaves open the questions of use, appropriation, and the completion of the construction measure.

In the shop