Multidisciplinary before it was cool, Interior Design Hall of Fame member Michael Vanderbyl never met a design boundary he couldn’t cross. “I come from a point of view that everything communicates,” Vanderbyl says. That perspective was particularly pertinent in composing a unified brand identity for an office-furniture giant’s flagship showroom, an incubator of emerging workplace directions displayed as vignettes throughout the 11,000 square feet.
Branding statements begin, as they should, boldly, with a glass entry wall etched in a proprietary typeface. Its sans serif letters, derived from squares softened around the edges, symbolize the company’s modus operandi: tempering expertise with approachability. The lettering recurs across all signage and collateral materials, including Vanderbyl-illustrated white papers on industry issues and trends. Readers can find these materials in a library where current marketing and advertising images are framed and mounted, easily passing as artwork.
That’s also where cushy lounge seating and a communal bench table establish a gathering spot modeled after a living room with a welcoming fireplace. The concept, informed by Teknion research, aims to inspire accessibility and transparency—not unlike the seamlessness of Vanderbyl’s approach. “Branding is about informing, while marketing is about persuading,” he says. “Design is the ligature that ties the two together.”
Project Team: Peter Fishel; David Hard.