YQ is a new company that deals in health-related goods, and we were commissioned to design its head office and an exhibition space in an existing industrial building. One of requests from the client was to have an open working environment instead of a cluster of rooms. It was our design challenge to create a good balance between its openness for communication and closeness for the staff to focus on their individual work. The idea of “pocket wall” came out as a design tool to organize the functional spaces and control the quality of working environment.
The pocket wall is a full-height partition wall in a U-shape. It certainly defines an interior space, but it doesn’t completely enclose the space as one side is open. By allocating eight of them over the site with their open sides always outward against windows, it created two kinds of basic spatial conditions: first, a blight but comparatively closed space along the windows at the north and south, suitable for the work; and second, a dynamic and continuous space between curvilinear walls in the middle of the floor, enjoyable to walk and suitable for the exhibition.