What does creativity look like? For a pair of creative agencies in Atlanta it is an office space that channels, illuminates and defines. When sister companies, Artistic Image and Artemis Creative, purchased a pair of lofts in the historic King Plow Arts Center, they turned to ai3 to build out the space. While the two companies — one an animation studio and the other a design and branding agency — share resources and often collaborate on projects, it was important that the space remain neutral. Rather than brand the space for one or both agencies, ai3 developed a space that would ultimately illustrate what it means to be creative in general.
With 28-foot ceilings and a clerestory that floods the lofts with natural light, the space was equally tasked with establishing community and confidentiality where needed. Although they share an address, printer and kitchen, the two agencies occasionally work with direct competitors. Thus, it was vital to maintain separate identities without hindering overall accessibility. The resulting design solution has, as its keystone, a 56-foot tunnel of frosted acrylic panels supported by curved plywood ribs. The multi-functional tunnel provides for discreet passage from the entrance to the individual studios while also housing shared copiers, printers and fax machines. Lit from within, the tunnel also acts as a dramatic stage, projecting light, shadow and movement throughout the space.
At the center of the building is the community kitchen, housed in a structure that mimics the tunnel but made with clear acrylic panels to communicate transparency and openness. The two studios are each afforded distinct space, one housed at the far end of the tunnel and the other in a centrally located mezzanine accessed by a hidden stairway that runs behind the wall supporting the tunnel. Offices run along the wall opposite the tunnel. Maintaining the collaborative concept, individual offices are not walled-off, but rather partitioned behind frosted panels with floating ceilings.