New York, NY
This 2000 SF spa and retail store on New York’s Lower East Side is owned by two sisters who requested that the design of the store identify with their California roots and project an environment more akin to a familiar home than a store. Evoking the materials and patterns of their childhood, a series of wallpapers and built-in seating and display areas were installed around a lounge area at the center of the plan. Riffing on the dark wood tones of mid-century furnishings, two large installation pieces were designed to merge the mechanical and precise characteristics of digital fabrication with the natural grain and organic patterns of figuration found in wood veneer. One piece is comprised of a series of large-format, wood veneer slides which are backlit to produce the effect of glowing, translucent walnut. The images, which were provided by the clients, were reproduced in large-format with a laser-cutter and stacked as an assembly of plexi-glass and wood veneer layers. The second installation produces a photographic image directly on the surface of a common material (in this case, Medium Density Fiberboard) using the laser-cutter to etch a 12-foot wide panorama of the Valley into the face of the MDF panels. In both installations, the speed, economy, and predictable accuracy of the laser cutter enabled us to rapidly test the design concept and enjoy more of the uncontrolled results of introducing the naturally imperfect wood veneer and fiberboard material.