- Berlin, Germany
- Seamus Kowarzik Studio
- Friederike von Rauch
Located in a typical Berlin apartment building just off Karl Marx Alle, the Seamus Kowarzik Studio space was converted from a vacated upholsterer and a disused bakery. The layout was configured in a series of small rooms, including an industrial oven situated at the back of the unit. Measuring around 200 square metres, the space stretched over two floors. It was gutted to create two office spaces on the ground floor with storage and a model-making area in the basement. The industrial oven from the bakery measuring 5 x 3 metres in plan and 6 metres high was removed, creating a new space that houses the meeting room. A staircase made from mild and stainless steel connects the two floors.
To contrast the heaviness of the thick existing masonry walls, a timber box was inserted into the main office space where the kitchen and bathroom are located. The timber box is clad with 3.8 metres high birch wood panelling that has a white stain allowing for a subtle colour transition from the off-white walls. The desks were specially designed for the space and constructed from solid mahogany, providing a focal point against the pale walls and timber box. Custom made lights were created to provide various lighting atmospheres for the space.
Working environments play an essential role in how we think, create, and engage with people and projects. Its effect on the productivity and mood of a company is not to be underestimated. The influence of space and its personality on the worker goes far beyond seating arrangements and resting areas. The high contrast interior foregoes any attention to ornamentation and puts forward the importance of the quality of materials. In this case, a beautiful spread of concrete flooring, natural wood, and the soft, smooth textures of the curtains. This minimalist space appears to be an ideal canvas for the studio's compelling and beautiful architectural work.
Established in 2016, the studio engages with each project with a cohesive ethos; in its sensitivity to texture, choice of materials, proportion, and light. Studio founder Seamus Kowarzik has worked with various architectural practices, notably John Pawson in London and Sauerbruch & Hutton in Berlin. During his 15-years with John Pawson, he engaged in creating a range of projects varying in scale from the vast private gallery The Feuerle Collection in Berlin, The Palmgren House in Stockholm, to a door handle crafted for the German specialist manufacturer FSB.