How did this project come about?
I’ve been working as a brand consultant with Kvadrat for a few years and Anders approached me and asked if I’d design their new showroom. Just as I knew I needed the skills of Ben Kelly to do the Hacienda project, I knew I wouldn’t dare do something like this without a more expert eye so I asked if I could choose a collaborator.
Why did you choose David Adjaye?
I’d never worked with or even met David before but I’d been a big fan of his work. I have lots of architect friends who people might have expected me to choose but I had no hesitation inviting David – there’s a very attractive lightness about his architecture. He very quickly spotted that light and colour were the common ground between my work and Kvadrat too.
When did you first see the space?
About 18 months ago. It was strange though, the office units that were here before were left abandoned, it looked like the company went bust and everyone was ordered to leave their desks with just a moment’s notice – pens, paper, phones chairs were all as they had been when it was a functioning office. It was like the Marie Celeste.
How did the process of collaboration work?
Well David and I talked about it and he then presented this design with the staircase to me and I couldn’t believe it.
Was it his idea to riff on your New Order cover then?
Yes totally. It tied in so well with our idea of colour for Kvadrat.
Were you very hands on throughout the construction process too?
Well it was a bit like doing the artwork for a band and visiting them in their studio while their putting the record together. You go along a few times and all you hear is the same drum beat time after time, then suddenly the whole thing’s miraculously finished.
How do you feel being here in the finished space now?
It’s strange, because my studio is just round the corner and it’s quite early, it feels quite unusual to be dressed and sitting down to lunch. I never usually get dressed when I’m in my studio. Well not this early anyway.
Watch Peter Saville's animation created for the opening night party
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about the new Kvadrat showroom