Georges Zigrand Design Consultancy

Wiedersehen macht Freude

street furniture_installation Georges Zigrand
street furniture_installation Georges Zigrand
street furniture_installation Georges Zigrand
My deckchairs, fitted with a custom designed fabric which shows all the colours of the 28 EU member state flags proportionally ( see post ‘Work hard, play hard’ ), have re-surfaced this summer in the old town of Luxembourg City. A year after the Luxembourg Presidency of the European Council they have been distributed to several city centre sites and used as public space furniture over the summer months.
Unfortunately we might have to take some classic blue, red & white out for next year.

Graphics: Laurent Daubach

Back to the stone age


Heritage site signage, vitreous enamel

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Heritage site signage, vitreous enamel

The national heritage agency in Luxembourg (Service des Sites et Monuments Nationaux ) has asked me to design & develop a bespoke information panel system for two distinct archeological sites.  Both sites are unsupervised, which required a simple and robust solution against weathering effects and vandalism.

The steel support structures have been designed as light & unobstrusive as possible to integrate them visually into the sensitive archeological sites.
The information panels are manufactured in the northern Vosges region in France, famous for its glass manufacturing tradition. The panels are made from vitreous enamel in one of the only remaining vitreous enamel factories in Europe. This traditional technique, where the graphics are silkscreened on low carbon steel and fired at up to 850 C°, is extremly hard-wearing, UV stable and weathering proof.

Client: SSMN (Service des Sites et Monuments Nationaux)
En collaboration avec le CNRA (Centre National de Recherche Archéologique)
Graphic design: Arnaud Mouriamé

Brutal but true

Posted in Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 25/05/2015


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The slogan across the facade of this church in Dieuze, northern France reads ‘vous aurez toujours des pauvres parmi vous’, which roughly translats as ‘you will always have poor people among yourselves’. That has for me more then one meaning and is brutally true..

The intricate relief sculpture is also fairly brutal, but fantastic at the same time. Also interesting is the fact that an artist ( Paul Gaudin, 1958) has been able to shape the main appearance of the building with his relief and glass design, and not an architect.

Knockin’ on heaven’s door

Church door, star shaped
Star-shaped entrance door of a village church in Luxembourg. I really like the way the star-shaped pattern is radiating outwards from the central metal fitting, using a fairly simple profile of wooden boards. Almost psychedelic…

Hartlepool shows the way

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Very robust and beautifully simple coastal path signage between Hartlepool Headland and Crimdon Dene, North East England

Lego style outdoor furniture for the almost grown-ups

Conventional tables and chairs wouldn’t have worked that well for the terrasse of my local hangout. The cultural centre Carrérotondes in Luxembourg, with its concerts, exhibitions, kids theatres and parties required a flexible way of sitting (and drinking). The Lego principle gives plenty of options on how to configure the modules, leaving it up to the user and the moment to choose how to use them.
Materials: Custom designed male & female rubber connectors combined with water resistant low-cost plywood.

Photo © Sven Becker

Photo © Sven Becker

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Chainsaw massacre

Posted in Products & furniture design, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 20/10/2014

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Tree & chainsaw = very nice steps

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

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Ingenious low budget playground

Posted in Products & furniture design, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 19/06/2013

A resourceful approach to create a playground in Corfu… and I bet it ticks all the boxes of safety standards too!
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Ponts & Chaussées

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

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A new bus shelter for Luxembourg-city

Based on an existing JCD shelter designed by Norman Foster we fine-tuned & adapted the design in collaboration with the city and JCD to better fit todays user needs. Over 250 shelters will be installed / replaced the next couple of years across the city’s bus network.
With a user-centered approach the team developed a new back-lit independent totem that regroups a number of information that is easy to read, even from a distance. The same logic applies to the glass panel on the opposite side where we also re-grouped passenger information usually spread randomly all over the shelter.

 

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Paris bashing

It is well known that the bistro culture in Paris is a league on its own, sitting tightly packed on street corners, coffee & cigarettes, waiters that don’t care, gazing at the people passing by …
The typical Paris bistro table with a single foot and an oversized thin metal edging embodies this way of life quite well for me. Every bash and knock the metal edging gets adds character & texture to the table, making it age gracefully without aspiring to be perfect.

Typical bashed Paris bistrot table

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.

Pondicherry shows the way

Posted in Signage & spatial communication, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 20/05/2012

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!

3D tiles

Posted in Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 02/11/2011

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Outdoor ceramic tiles in the public realm always fascinated me, especially if they are in relief. They seem to be such a good solution for buildings, street furniture and walls. There is an almost endless scope of design options; texture, pattern, light reflection, colour ..etc. The slide show shows examples from Belgium (Ostend), Portugal (Cascais) & France (Le Tréport).

If any reader knows of other fine examples, please let me know. I would like to collect more images and hopefully I can post a more comprehensive collection of examples in the near future.

Big in Japan

Posted in Signage & spatial communication, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 27/09/2011

Road works barriers are rarely a pretty site in Europe, but if  you live in Japan it is a whole different story. To the delight of the Japanese kids there seems to be an endless variation of cartoon animals that populate the roadside. Not sure it makes much more sense in terms of safety / visibility ..etc, but I guess fun is a good enough reason and you can’t really spoil a construction site with visual clutter either.

Photo © Pierre Filliquet

Back to nature

Posted in Products & furniture design, Street furniture & public realm by zigideluxe on 04/07/2011

I have seen this type of benches before in forests and parks without really appreciating them. But the concept of a bench with a cast structure that mimics root wood, as disturbing as it looks, starts to grow on me. If you choose casting as a technique you can also open up to other shape typologies, no reason to keep the geometric language you pretty much have to respect if you fabricate something in any other standard way.
To then paint it in such a colour makes the bench almost eccentric, even if it goes against the initial idea of making the bench blend into its natural surroundings.
I also wondered if Maarten Baas came here on holiday one day…

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