OfficeUS, the US Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, has all the trappings of a fully functioning office: desks, a receptionist, soon-to-arrive Makerbot 3-D printers, and a little boudoir in the middle.
“Every office needs a place of repose,” said Chris Leong of Leong Leong, the firm that created the exhibition design. (We completely agree.) “Usually they don’t, but it’s part of the idea that workspace and worklife are transforming and overlapping.”
So, at the circular center of the U-shaped office space, he and partner (and brother) Dominic Leong installed a circular bed. They built it out of faux-terrazzo, flexible but solid scraps of foam reconstituted to a lightweight material that resembles that marble, quartz, granite, or glass composite material that’s everywhere in Venice, including the US Pavilion floor. Enshrouded in silver vertical blinds, the piece provides a respite and recharge station during the OfficeUS fellows’ daily grind when that essential 4 p.m. espresso doppio just doesn’t cut it.
OfficeUS in US Pavilion, Leong Leong, 2014. Courtesy Leong Leong
OfficeUS; inside Pavilion designed by Leong Leong & Pentagram: Natasha Jen. Courtesy David Sundberg / Esto