Knees on the carpet, head out in the world: Together with Ippolito Fleitz Group, the internationally renowned studio for interior design, product design and branding, a collection has been created combining a new desire for textile and a thinking in new spaces. In every sense. An interview with Lars Engelke, Managing Director at Object Carpet, and Tilla Goldberg, Director Product Design at Ippolito Fleitz Group. Namely "on the carpet" - in the rooms of the Stuttgart studio.
The new collection is titled "OBJECT CARPET x Ippolito Fleitz Group". What is being multiplied here?
Lars Engelke: "Simply put: The respective competencies. From us as a manufacturer and brand and the Ippolito Fleitz Group as a studio that works on a high international design level in interior design and product design. That of course, is also true - but at the same time our collaboration has shown that together we can deliver much more than just combining product understanding and design competence. In particular, the examination of the identity of rooms, spatial typologies and the associated atmospheric perspective have given us a new viewpoint."
Tilla Goldberg: This is the moment to talk about our philosophy of "identity architects". What is written below our name always captures the perspective of the market or of the customer. How do independent spatial identities come about these days? Which influences play a role? Armed with this viewpoint, we not only looked at the carpet – but rather from the carpet out into the world and back again. Ultimately, that is the real idea behind "new desire for textile": A longing, driven by very concrete, ground-breaking market developments.
What happens there? Can you give a few examples?
Tilla Goldberg: "There are very factual causes and developments. On a strategic and cultural level. It gets really exciting! For example, companies are increasingly concerned with transforming to agile work. When you break it down to the design of new work environments, it is about creating atmospheres that support well-being or making zones that invite teams to inspiring meetings. A carpet literally lays the foundation for a room - atmospherically as well as in terms of very direct use, such as by connecting rooms or doing away with borders. Or when it comes to hotels, we talk more about temporary residence than merely the possibility of staying overnight. As a striking example from our discussions and experiences: An area intended for a dialogue between employees is often better decided by a well-chosen carpet than the boss.
Lars Engelke: Exactly. When we talk to customers, we also notice very clearly how the requirements or the approach to floor selection have changed. A few years ago, these were more direct questions related to colour or quality, today it is much more complex - or, if you will, more conceptual. Translated to what Mrs. Goldberg said, it is therefore more about what, for example, defines the corporate culture, how a carpet can support zoning for work teams. This world of debate poses an exciting challenge for us. Or, put another way: Being a contemporary conversation partner for a rethinking of work culture, shopping or guest experience is a central driving force for our collaboration.
"Walk x Talk" or "Skill x Chill" are therefore not just eye-catching names for the individual designs in the collection, but also point to atmospheric areas of use?
Lars Engelke: Yes, well put. With our new collection, we wanted to express with each single product that the approach is always greater than thinking in terms of new designs. We share the view and thinking of architects and planners and look forward to a dialogue about areas of use, atmosphere, culture and the effect on employees, customers or visitors.
What happens next? How do you make the content of the new collection tangible for the market?
Tilla Goldberg: "A question that has shaken us up in the last few months! Because the original plan to present the new collection in a large room installation as part of the Milan Design Week in the beautiful vaults of the Ventura Centrale was simply shattered due to the Corona pandemic. The chance to make the new desire for textile, the pronounced compatibility of the collection's carpets and the spatial perspective accessible had to be re-staged and presented to a broad audience. We set up the installation as a film set and had it artistically interpreted by the renowned fashion photographer Monica Menez. The result is a short film, in the best Film Noir tradition, and a digital 360° VR application."
And what can be seen?
Tilla Goldberg: "I'll only give away carpet cheeseburgers ..."
Lars Engelke: "Ok, then I won't reveal any more either. But in addition to the film, I would of course like to point out the possibilities of going through the new viewbook personally with our consultants or visiting us in one of our showrooms."