December 10 2008

London-based architecture and design firm Jump Studios believes that innovation comes from breaking barriers between design disciplines. At Jump, expertise from the worlds of fashion, art, anthropology and academia is added to the design and architecture contingent.

This must have been part of the appeal when design, communications and marketing group Engine selected Jump as the designer of its new digs. Engine’s five-storey new building on 60 Great Portland Street had to please the 12 different companies operating under the Engine umbrella - and their clients.
Jump director Simon Jordan and team had to conjure up an environment that could house and appeal to a vast range of tastes and cultures. Yet, somehow, it all had to reflect a coherent Engine brand as well.

Interestingly, the lozenge-shaped white 'meeting pods' bring to mind a Disneylandish combo of a Tomorrowland ride and the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. One might half expect to grab the edges of the white table and feel the unit starting to turn round and round. This is not a bad thing. It all manages to look calm and cool while having a sense of whimsy. Same thing with the purple-pink loungers that look like they could have been made of a sweet, edible stiff foam, cut into bulky shapes with a gigantic saw. Even with the cute undertones, the seating stays on this side of classy and creates an imposing visual element. The large internal windows with their rounded edges evoke a feeling of a large ship, with the people inside seeming to be on a journey.

Whether any of this was Jump’s intention is irrelevant. When a communications group’s space - intentionally or accidentally - speaks of imagination, whimsy and moving ahead, it surely must be a space that fits its dynamic occupants.
The client list of Jump Studios includes also Nike, Red Bull, Adidas, Wieden + Kennedy, Honda and Levi’s. Projects for Bloomberg, Adidas, Fiat and L’Oreal are next on Jump’s agenda. - Tuija Seipell

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