Georges Zigrand's Blog

Max Planck Institute, Luxembourg

Posted in A selection of recent projects, integratedPlace, Products & furniture by zigideluxe on 29/12/2013

Some images of my latest interior & furniture design  project for the new offices of the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law located in the Weicker Building in Luxembourg-city.

The building itself was designed by Richard Meier & Partners Architects, a building with a very specific formal identity. The challenge was to find a suitable visual language that fits the architecture and, at the same time, cover all the functionalities and representative needs required by this prestigious client – all of this within a framework of a EU wide open tender procedure. The result is a mix of products from high-end furniture manufacturers and a range of custom-designed objects to ensure a coherent visual language and quality throughout the building.

Developed in collaboration with Teisen-Giesler Architectes
Client: Max Planck Insitute Luxembourg
Office & library surface: 4500m2
Max Planck reading roomMax Planck meeting cornerMax Planck double office space Photos © Christian Mosar

Outdoor furniture – extra bold

Designed for outdoor spaces like nature reserves, parks & forests, this seating range is composed of large & chunky shapes with very simple profiles. The large – single piece – wood parts are made from locally sourced oak trunks with a simply sawn finish to resist weathering and vandalism. Due to its thickness, the wood can be sanded down if damaged but can also happily live with the added texture.
The wood profiles and tubular powder coated steel tubes are both an integral part of the structure and form objects with a strong visual contrast between natural and man made materials. The simple & sculptural shapes should integrate well in natural environments, yet stand out enough to be noticed for its quality.

Outdoor furniture range Outdoor park bench Outdoor lounge chair Outdoor picnic table

Have a seat and enjoy

The City of Luxembourg commissioned us to develop an furniture and colour guidance manual for the terrasses on one of it’s most prestigious squares in the city centre.  After many years of wild west behavior of the restaurants and cafés, using mostly cheap looking plastic furniture, branded umbrellas, primary colours and endless clutter the city wanted to clean up.
The new scheme, involving a selection of muted colours and more attractive furniture typologies has now been implemented, giving the square a more dignified and calm appearance while focusing on the quality of the space, the trees and the architecture.
One of press critics wrote at the time that we want to take colour and life out of the City, thankfully the chap in his all red training outfit plus hat has turned-up on my photo (on the right) to prove that it is not furniture & umbrellas that are creating a colourful city life!

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Fair games

Just finished a signage & wayfinding project for the Olympic Games of the Small Nations of Europe, held in Luxembourg this year. Very refreshing to work on a fast and short term project for a change. In collaboration with Luxembourg based Designbureau. Client: Comité Olympique et Sportif Luxembourgeois

SITE_SIGNAGE TRIANGLE_3 PEDESTRIAN_SIGNAGE PUBLIC_TRANSPORT EVENT_SIGNAGE CAR_SIGNAGE

Ponts & Chaussées

Some fine (and proud) signage on a depot of the Luxembourg civil engineering agency.

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Traditionally fashionable

Stella McCartney shop flooring, traditional and innovative at the same time.

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No street art please!

EGGBOX_soundwallNot only that it is sound absorbing and weathering friendly, it also is tag and graffiti proof. Keep those egg cartons!!

DIY magic

Posted in Exhibitions & installations, integratedPlace, Retail environments by zigideluxe on 19/11/2012

Glass door crisscrossed with magic tapMagic tape must be one of the best office inventions after the post-it. In combination with low-budget DIY needs it becomes even more magic, as I’ve noticed on this door of an Architects studio in Barcelona…

Thank you for your service

Barcelona street plate celebrating a traditional restaurant
I can’t speak Catalan but this plate set into the paving in front of the long established Deli/Restaurant ‘Can Ravell’ in Barcelona says something like: ‘In the name of the City of Barcelona – in recognition to Ravell for its many years of service to the city’.

The plate seems to regroup many symbols of trade and craft and I suppose the City of Barcelona sets these plates in front of their most long serving, authentic and traditional businesses that make the city so special. What a great initiative! And the food was even better!!

Concorde memorabilia

Posted in Branding, integratedPlace, Products & furniture by zigideluxe on 25/10/2012

Original concorde shaped pen with embossed note pad
The Concorde might have been a fuel guzzling, noisy and elitist plane representing the excesses of the ‘trente glorieuses’, but it also embodies a great believe, excitement and optimism in the future. Not something you can say about today…
Also great is to see a really good quality and stylish souvenir that was handed out to every person flying with the Concorde. The pen looks as fast as the the Concorde flies and even has a bit of a nose like the real thing. Try and find a pen in your drawers that you got for free that is of any quality…

Cheap & cheerful

DIY street stall made from an off the shelf ladder
Creating a street stall for a one day event to sell hand made scarves from Bangladesh is not my usual design brief, especially if the budget had to be kept at an absolute minimum. But there is always a way, even if it means going to the DIY shop..

Scarves designed by Luxembourgish designer Anne-Marie Herckes with the assistance of the Vocational Training and Employment Generation Project of the NGO ‘Friendship’.

Eau de Luxembourg

Kids drinking from water fountain in Luxembourg city

This water drinking fountain is the first of many to be installed in the City of Luxembourg. The scheme was initiated by the city’s own Service des Eaux and elaborated in close collaboration with the City Management, other administrations of the city and myself as an external design consultant.

After an in-depth research of existing drinking fountains across Europe we have identified this fountain as the most suitable product for Luxembourg. The fountain has initially been developed by the french designer Cécile Planchais for Eau de Paris and will also be rolled-out in Paris next year.

Besides the functional & hygienic qualities its subtle timeless design has convinced us to be the right choice for Luxembourg. The textured surface and distinctive shape blurs the boundaries of time, making it contemporary but also fit nicely in an heritage environment. Also, after two days in use in the city the form and shape has proven that its function and purpose is self-explanatory.

Urban ping pong

Posted in integratedPlace, Products & furniture, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 07/06/2012

ping pong tables in the Belgian quarter of Cologne, GermanyStreet furniture doesn’t need to be limited to the basic amenities such as seating, lighting ..etc. If you want to induce live into a square, this is a good way to do it, and it keeps you fit too!

Pondicherry shows the way

Signage in Pondicherry, India
Some years ago I took this photo in the city of Pondicherry, India. Amazingly low-tech this hand-painted and sculptural road sign shows the way, also by its expressive and truly functional shape. Love it!

Quality banking


Interior concept for the 74 branches of the Banque et Caisse d’Epargne de l’Etat, a national institution in Luxembourg – designed by  Teisen-Giesler Architectes & integratedPlace.
We elaborated a scheme conveying the notion of safety, tradition, quality and long established values. By emphasising solid build elements made from cast terrazzo and oak we underlined the trustworthy image of the bank. Timeless shapes and high quality materials should also underline the fact that the bank, with it’s long history, is here to stay.

Design proposal elaborated following an closed competition initiated by the BCEE. No winners announced as yet…
For more information: www.integratedplace.com

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