Amber waves of acrylic plastic extend through the floor of a two-story, mechanized matrix in Breaking The Surface, a new interactive installation from Scandanavian Design Group, ctrl+n, Abida, Pivot Product Design and Intek. The kinetic sculpture is meant to evoke an abstract image of the geological world below sea level, a nod to the technology used by the commissioning oil company, Lundin Norway.
Breaking The Surface can be enjoyed from two distinct views— below and above the ‘surface.’ On the lower level, the installation is a 23 x 23 grid of plastic stalactites hanging at just about face level.
Our approach to design is ironically both strong and soft. With this pavilion we have expressed a strong and informative form but simultaneously created a soft and comfortable series of spaces for people to experience. The strong, angular expression of the pavilion encompasses inviting spaces with "soft" walls and warm tones of floor and furnishings.
From the outset our ambition was to give the installation the right setting. It is like embracing a jewel, the surroundings should be non-confrontational but also have a life of its own. We wanted to offer both an informative experience to the visitor but to also create the right setting to accomplish the client’s ambitions. Often we forget about the small sensibilities and subtleties with designing space and here we hope to address some of these issues by looking very closely at the details and materiality.
With such an ambitious and highly visible concept we have to allow the public full access to all spaces but we must also ensure space for business. To accomplish this we have used 3 levels. The first level acts as a meeting and mingling space where the audience catches a glimpse of the "main event." On the second level we experience the installation from within, a suspended moving, interactive installation that shines as a tribute to Lundin and their work. This space is mainly enclosed and will feel like an exhibition room. White walls with blurred and diffused structure dimly revealed from behind will encase the warm glowing installation. The upper level will offer a different expression and aesthetic, here we celebrate the innovation and engineering, exposing the processes and makings of the installation. At this level the visitor walks around the installation rather than through it as below. This level also offers a space to sit, reflect and perhaps do a little business.
Close collaboration with the other parties and the client has helped shape the project and its solutions, one part would not work without the other and this seamless transition from branding to interactive design to engineering to architecture to interior design and back again will be clearly (in)visible to the visitor and acts as a celebration to mixed creativity and to close collaborative working methodologies.
The stand is expected to be placed at the reception lobbey at the new Lundin Norway Headquarters next year.