Ben van Berkel / UNStudio’s seating stones series launched by Walter Knoll

Ben van Berkel / UNStudio’s Seating Stones Series was launched by Walter Knoll at Orgatec 2014 in Cologne last week. The Seating Stones series is designed to encourage active participation and personalisation in the space creation of the contemporary office environment.

Offering a variety of workspace types has become imperative in the contemporary work environment. Whilst individual workstations remain essential to concentration and productivity, common office spaces are being employed more creatively in order to provide a variety of areas to meet, confer, brainstorm and socialise.

Today’s workplace is therefore designed to enable and encourage mobility, diversity, flexibility and collaboration as a means of creative knowledge management through the incorporation of formal and informal meeting places.

Seating Stones – Active design for space creation

Contrary to fixed furniture configurations in common spaces, the individual elements of the Seating Stones family are designed for ease of placement and reconfiguration, responding to different types of gatherings and spontaneously altering group dynamics. The Seating Stones series therefore does not dictate the spatial configuration of communication, it instead enables the users to determine this according to their needs at any given moment.

Within the workplace layout versatile, flexible and dynamic spaces for communication can be configured and reconfigured with ease, creating transitional islands for both work and recreation.

In addition to the possibilities offered for the activation of communal areas, Seating Stone elements can be employed to activate spaces housing individual work stations where layouts are typically static and fixed, but where communication and impromptu exchange still play a vital role. Operating as ‘add-on’ elements for impromptu communications, Seating Stone elements can be interspersed throughout and easily transported when required. The Seating Stones family can therefore curate an active use of space throughout the working the environment.

Balancing public and private, formal and informal, proximity and distance

Whilst open workplaces can increase the effectivity of communication, it is equally important within these shared spaces to ensure a balance between improved and more open communication and the need for privacy and personal space. The individual elements of the Seating Stones family therefore allow for multiple possible configurations which fulfil these differing requirements: to enhance communication and interaction or to enable concentration and isolation.

The Seating Stones series furthermore presents office furniture with a homely touch: a less formal, softer and more comfortable character which introduces a congenial quality to working, meeting and connecting.

The Seating Stones family

The Seating Stones series currently comprises six individual elements, each designed with specific characteristics for use, but which when grouped enable a wide variety of configurations.