Dramatic changes in form of appearance speak volumes, writes Alnoor AMLANI with special reference to Ideal Interiors Expo 2011, which experienced an inspirational metamorphosis.
In the same way that a writer or painter approaches a blank page, or a musician reaches for a sweet and elusive melody; a great interior designer approaches an empty space with acute awareness of a large number of factors.
Ultimately, a designed space is a sensory experience and through design these spaces should encourage the occupant to react in the desired way. For instance, in a hotel, a client would be anticipating an overall effect of serenity and comfort for guests; for a home environment, the feeling of a nurturing shelter emerges. Where the space is intended for a retail function, designers seek to inspire confidence in the products and in a corporate office setting they seek to motivate.
Light, colour, dimension, movement, temperature, ventilation, flooring, amenities and mood are direct considerations to name a few. And of course, there must be a practical knowledge of what options are available locally and abroad in line with the budget. Finally (and certainly not the least), the designer must be clear on what the client requires and the purpose of the space.
Looking for inspiration
Yet amidst all this, designers all ultimately search for something that is difficult to describe. It is commonly referred to as inspiration, but it inches closer to a kind of presence or character of the space that can only be sensed or felt within its context. Indeed great sculptors claim only to be releasing the form or feeling that is trapped within the wood or stone they are working with. Therefore by inference, great interior designers bring forth or release a form that potentially exists in the empty space.
When the sense of what the space wants to be is strong and clear, and the creative force is allowed free reign, the result is transformative design.The presence that could only be sensed is manifested and can be experienced. In being manifest in-turn, it affects those who experience it and hence the true artist lives through his or her work.
All creatives search for this effect. But without vision, it cannot be successfully achieved.
The Decor Interiors’ space at the recently concluded Ideal Interiors Expo at The Village Market is an example of how a space can be transformed with vision. Their style of contemporary earth led them towards the use of natural materials and tones. With a simple and powerful vision, they blended the various interior elements in a complex interplay that is ultimately pleasing and comforting
Visitors to the first floor car park area discovered that the entire parking space had metamorphosed overnight into an unrecognizable interiors exhibition space, protected from the elements by canvas tents and filled with a range of furnishing, lighting, flooring, plumbing and even cutlery options. The car park ordinarily is a rushed, hurried space with people seeking to park quickly, avoid the cold and deal with their shopping bags and children before someone runs them over! This transformation took visitors to a
comfortable, warm and relaxing zone where they felt at ease to browse and feel. And at the centre of this transformation is DecorInteriors; offering a modern, multipurpose space, with a tasteful dining setting, lounge sofas and a bar counter all manufactured in workshops run by Décor Interiors Ltd. The elevated flooring and dramatic angled pillars projected visually a creative energy that is impossible to restrict or contain. It is a design simply bursting into being however you approach it. The effect wasparticularly dramatic in the middle of an exhibition setin a car park!
Home away from home
After the exhibition closed for public display, the Decor Interiors space became an intimate meeting place for people toshare, laugh and indulge; a testimonythat the energy of the 36 sqm was indeed transformed into a home away from home.
DECOR INTERIORS won two awards at the exhibition for Best Stand in the Auxiliary Décor & Support Services category, and also came in an outstanding second in the People’s Choice Award and set a new standard for exhibitive display regionally. Then they took it down and rebuilt it in their showroom in Viking House. The elements have moved somewhat in their showroom. The bar is in the corner and the lighting fixtures have shifted. The stone gazelles are now standing on the sisal coffee table. But the feeling is the same.
This is a tenet of good design. The elements flow together well, because they have been carefully thought through. The harmony within the space is evident and the effect of calming, warmth and comfort can betransplanted, modified and, if necessary scaled up.
Whenever you undertake to participate in an expo, the key goal is to attract, excite, engage and finally evangelise your products and services to your prospective customers. However, how come most people do not put a conscious effort to make this happen? How do you attract people to your stand? What makes you stand out? How will you manage to excite with the purpose to engage and tell people about you services if your stand doesn’t tell the initial story.
It is in trying to answer these very real questions that Design Forty Ltd has pioneered in the provision of Expo systems that maximise the impact of your products and services. We achieve this by developing exhibition stands that are tailored and relevant to your services and products.
The unique panels are tailored to meet the highest standards of design. The designs are not the standard 3 x 3 sizes. Creative, innovative and flexible designs give you not only a stand that attracts visitors and envious looks from competitors, but is adaptable and re-usable and employs the best in materials and construction techniques.
Exhibition design is the process of developing an exhibit—from concept through to a physical, three-dimensional exhibition. It is a continually evolving field, drawing on innovative, creative and practical solutions to the challenge of developing communicative environments that ‘tell a story’ in a three-dimensional space.
At Design Forty, we use a wide range of technologies and techniques to create experiences that will resonate with diverse audiences–enabling these targeted audiences to access the messages, stories and objects of an exhibit.. All types of exhibits aim to communicate a message by engaging their audiences in meaningful and compelling interactions.
Exhibit design is a collaborative process, integrating the disciplines of Interior Design, Plantscaping, graphic design, audiovisual engineering, digital media, lighting, Architecture and content development to develop an audience experience that interprets information, involves and engages a user and influences their understanding of a subject.
Exhibition Design process builds on a conceptual or interpretive plan for an exhibit, determining the most effective, engaging and appropriate methods of communicating a message or telling a story. The process will often mirror the architectural process or schedule, moving from conceptual plan, through schematic design, design development, contract document, fabrication and installation.
The first phases establish a thematic direction and develop creative and appropriate design solutions to achieve the interpretive and communication goals of the exhibit. The latter phases employ technical expertise in translating the visual language of the designs into detailed documents that provide all the specifications required to fabricate and install an exhibit.
The exhibition featured Kitchen Awards, which was conceptualized to recognize both international and local kitchen markers in the country. The judges placed Scavolini Kitchen by Prafulchandra & Brothers Ltd at the top of the pack for its user-friendly, exquisite and homely design. Kitchen and Office Interiors came in second overall. Wood Products was placed at number three. KITCHEN and Office Interiors was also duly recognized as the winner and subsequently presented with a Ksh 140,000 cheque from PG Bison who had sponsored the award.
The overall winner was Tacc Store. The company was recognized for a marvelous job, and for assembling an amazing stall with exceptional fittings and accessories.
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