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AZURE - June 2019 - The Workspace Issue - Cover

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Bright colours everywhere. IPDAA have just completed a 600-square-metre interior bursting with vibrant hues and animated by various shapes for the on-site daycare of 2FAF, an aluminum and glass accessories manufacturer headquartered in Tirana, Albania. The kindergarten is divided into five classrooms of roughly equal size, each designated for a different age group. In each, the installed furniture, including storage modeled on peak-roofed houses, brings the scale down to kid-size, while five distinctive colours of eco-friendly paint help to distinguish one classroom from another. The rooms also have their own child-friendly washrooms to allow teachers to keep an eye on all their students from inside the classroom.

The classrooms cluster around a large common area, where the colours that distinguish one space from another come together and combine to kaleidoscopic effect – especially on a striped feature wall, perforated like Swiss cheese with porthole-like openings, that separates the common area from the entrance and reception.

Each of the featured colours found in the entrance leads through the common zone to a different section of the building, sometimes in the form of a painted wall or handrail, at other times as footprints stencilled onto the high-resistance wood flooring – a whimsical way-finding technique that’s capped off with a large matching dot encircling each classroom’s door handle.

The double-height common room also includes a kid-friendly “treehouse” that overlooks the activity space below, integrated directly into the building’s walls from its perch on a load-bearing pillar. It’s one more example of IPDAA’s playful use of scale, with its child-friendly round cutouts to echo the circle motif found scattered throughout the interior. The toys and furniture reinforce a sense of fun, too, at a scale that’s geared towards kids: between the pastel-hued tables and chairs, you’ll find Magis Me Too’s animal-shaped Puppy and Pingy, and Ikea’s retractable-hood PS Lömsk swivel chair.

AZURE is an independent magazine working to bring you the best in design, architecture and interiors. We rely on advertising revenue to support the creative content on our site. Please consider whitelisting our site in your settings, or pausing your adblocker while stopping by.