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3131 Western Ave
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Seattle, WA   98121

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360 Riverside Drive
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New York, NY   10025

t 212.924.7331


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m 925.212.0140


The Design Associates

t 03-3404-0328


GIRVIN | Strategic Branding & Design | Seattle

GIRVIN | Strategic Branding & Design | New York

The Design Associates | Tokyo

BIG thinking | A visit, NYC

Exploring Creative Place | Design, Teams, Innovation

Traveling the world, as a designer, if one is so motivated, studying working environments, culture and vibe should be part of the practice of seeing into how design thinking happens.
See what one can, how others work, how other firms create.

In our work, we link to architects with frequency.
We admire this realm of design creativity.
Architects might be seen as quintessential designers.
Aside from the essential fragility of graphic design,
a fleeting expression by comparison,
architecture is big, it’s a
permanent [mostly] exposition.
Architecture can last.

Architecture, too, gathers the
core of the idea that brand is whole.
It’s holism — it’s “holding” in a big way — a person sees a built place from a distance,
approaching that place from the entrance,
entering the opening room,
the lobby, the foyer, a story unfolds in the experience of that observer.

Big presence, small details, light, touch, materiality, sound — an experiencer will sense what is happening, but there will be a causal point in degree; a trained student will see and sense it all —
the hands of seeing, the eyes of touch;
the feelingness of the place.

A trained experiencer will know the details of how it works, how it was put together. An unstudied explorer will simply feel the place and gather whatever impressions will layer their insight. Seeing in, the insight, is a two-edged proposition. Intuition, instinct, feelingness are just as valuable as deeper thoughtful rigor in understanding place. In the end, what does it feel like?

Being in design offices, a designer looking at places, one can sense how the process happens. Is it something of a long-winded and scholarly study, well-researched, tracked and documented — or free-flowing and a wilder drive to how the outcome could be uncovered? Or something in between, some magic, found?
Inspiration tingles.

Talking to the team at BIG, the attitude of inspiration wraps
around the founding leadership,
Bjarke Ingels – the B, the I, of BIG.

BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
Photo by Ulrik Jantzen

The longest shadow falls long from the top.
The story begins there, the human brand, that fires the ignition of ideas.
A leader is in front, and risks it all.
Bjarke Ingels leads his firm on
the presumption of risk and creative adventure,
the idea is that finding opportunities, much based on speculative engagement — pitching in competitive milieus, is a tough play field.
But in the risk that is there, the results show in the outcomes.
Visiting their offices in NYC, I sense energy, drive and youth. Everyone there feels energized in their commitment to finding the new, the next metaphor, the new leap.
And surely, there is BIG thinking here, to building typologies, community development
and strikingly remarkable architecture.
While there are BIG ideas, so too, there is a willingness to consider wholly different ideas about how to tell that story. Like a comic book manifesto.
More products and presentations here, including new books by Taschen and others.

Something of their environment,
only blocks from Girvin’s former office location on 26th:

An upper floor lobby with a parked food truck.
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC

A BIG front door.
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC

Marketing and working spaces:
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYCBIG thinking | A visit, NYC

Webcam of
another BIG office
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYCBIG thinking | A visit, NYCBIG thinking | A visit, NYCBIG thinking | A visit, NYCBIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC

Works built, in process and explorations:
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC
BIG thinking | A visit, NYC

What’s your impression?




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