Shanghai . China
What is the architecture of Under Armour? This is the question posed to Marc Thorpe Design. Our answer, it is an architecture of action, vigor and endurance. It is the translation of muscular definition into built form. A highly tuned, striking geometry giving a presence of visual weight, intensity and unique style, it is like no other. This architecture excites you, asking you to discover more, pulling you deeper into its spaces. It is a foundation of stability and strength, to encourage your mind, body and soul to “Protect this House.” Creative Director, Marc Thorpe and Studio Director, Greg Chiaramonte of Marc Thorpe Design, collaborated with HUSH Studios on a one of a kind experience retail space for sportswear brand Under Armour. The project would mark the launch of Under Armour’s arrival in Shanghai, China.
Located in the new Jing An Kerry Center in central Shanghai, the space is divided into 3 zones of activity. Entry Light Tunnel, the Experience Room and Retail. Upon entry to the space you are guided down a 30-foot long tunnel of light, designed to alter you retina in preparation for the Experience room. As you enter the massive Experience space, an exaggerated scale, 270-degree panoramic film designed and directed by HUSH’s creative team, surrounds the viewer. The film, as it’s technically integrated into the architecture and user experience, is designed to tell the story of the Under Armour brand featuring the latest products and technology active in the sports world today. As the film ends, you are invited to discover Under Armour products more intimately by moving into the retail space. The retail space hosts four individual product brand stories, designed as a temple of worship. The viewer engages each shrine to explore the Under Armour brand.
New York . NY
Mercedes-Benz was established at the same time as some of the most enduring fashion brands in the world, Hermes, Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Chanel. Fashion has long been based in the history and style of the Houses that were formed around them and this tradition is still true today. Like the fashion house, the designers and engineers that produce Mercedes-Benz have established Mercedes-Benz as one of the greatest brands ever, in any industry. For Fashion Week 2013, Mercedes-Benz will sit on the highest pedestal with the great fashion houses in the world. Mercedes-Benz will be elevated with the likes of The House of Chanel, The House of Dior and The House of Gucci. This “House of…” positioning reinforces the glory, the legacy and the pinnacle of creativity, design and engineering.
Pasiano di Pordenon . Italy
The Tout le Jour collection, roughly translated as All Day, is the second collaboration between Horm and Marc Thorpe. The sensibility of the collection is rooted in the honesty of materials and structure used to produce the furniture. A combination of steel, walnut, leather and stone synthesize into an elegant rhythm of proportion and detail. The collection is organized by two and three seat sofa’s, lounge chair, dining chair and low table.
Leuven . Belgium
Introducing Stella Artois NOVA, a Sleek, Stylish Innovation in Draught Beer
In Partnership with Acclaimed Industrial Designer Marc Thorpe, Stella Artois Pours Centuries of Brewing Heritage into Next-Generation Countertop Draught Device
Stella Artois, reflecting a Belgian brewing tradition dating back to 1366, today introduced Stella Artois NOVA, a stylish and design-driven innovation in draught beer. Stella Artois NOVA is an all-in-one, refrigerating countertop draught unit, created by Stella Artois in partnership with acclaimed industrial designer Marc Thorpe. The unit was developed for more intimate bars, lounges and restaurants that wish to serve draught beer but do not have the space or capability to install full-scale draught systems. Stella Artois NOVA now makes this possible thanks to its unique, break-through draught technology.
Stella Artois NOVA is the result of a year-long multinational design partnership between Stella Artois and Marc Thorpe, the acclaimed New York-based designer who has earned global accolades for achievements in industrial and architectural design.
“Building on more than six centuries of brewing heritage, its unique pouring ritual and dedicated chalice glass, Stella Artois has a long- standing tradition as a high quality draught beer. Now, thanks to Stella Artois NOVA, we are bringing this experience closer to fans of the brand in high end bars and restaurants that currently don’t have the opportunity to offer Stella Artois on draught,” said Ricardo Marques, vice president, Stella Artois. “We are very excited with the design direction Marc Thorpe crafted for Stella Artois NOVA: it’s not only groundbreaking but it goes further to embody the values, personality and quality of our brand.”
“Stella Artois has set the bar for the highest standards in beer production with a heritage that dates back hundreds of years. Over those years, the brand has built a culture around its identity reflecting timeless beauty, innovation, artistry, refined craftsmanship and a commitment to quality,” said Marc Thorpe. “The vision of this project was to design a best in class draught experience to be shared at bars and restaurants that did not previously have this capability. Stella Artois NOVA brings a new draught experience that celebrates the essence of this culture by bringing the standards, technology and rituals of Stella Artois to life.”
Udine . Italy
The Morning Glory takes its name from the flowering vine. The vines grow and wrap around each other reinforcing the structure of the plant. The pedals of the vine spread out become a canopy of surfaces to retain water. This organic architecture lends itself to the table designed for Moroso. Designed to be arranged in clusters, the three stems of the table connect at the base mimicking the organic structure of the vine itself. The pedals of the table overlap each other producing a multi layered system of surface and color.
Vidor . Italy
Lily is inspired by the architecture of the flowering plant Nymphaeaceae. Lily is a system of low lying pads and surfaces which operate at various heights to accommodate functions. High pads accommodate table and seating, while lower pads offer display and utility. When Lily is combined with members of its family the spatial effect can produce unique hybrid interactions through the layering of the pads and surfaces. Lily is Marc Thorpe’s expression of a new typology of seating surface which decentralizes the user to produce a higher degree of activity, usability and community.
Udine . Italy
Blur is a study of invisibility. Through the material suggestion of disappearance the Blur Sofa questions its objectivity, scale and the relationship between figure and ground. This distortion of mass provides the Blur Sofa with an irrefutable uncertainty of dimension.The Blur achieves this tactic of invisibility through its utilization of a new technique of fabric knitting. Produced by Innofa in Holland, the manufacturer knits layers of material to produce the fabric at various intervals creating a unique integrated gradient pattern and thus a suggestion of dissolving, fading or blurring.
Il semble lancé en orbite et pourtant satellite partout. Clinique, radical et doux, Marc Thorpe combine, depuis dix ans, une curiosité à 360 degrés et une pratique du design transversal, pensé sans frontière ni limitation.
A regarder son sofa “Blur” créé pour Moroso, revêtu de textile tricoté en 3D et imprimé en dégradé du orange vif au blanc, apparaît presque Marc Thorpe en autoportrait, créateur hyper-présent, néanmoins prompt à s’effacer autant qu’il peut, toujours en équilibre entre visible et invisible. Direct et franc du collier, le designer new-yorkais défonce tous les clichés du créateur poseur, perdu dans les affres de ses délires introspectifs. Autant dire que le dialogue est rafraîchissant, dynamique, à l’inverse des pleins et déliés de ses confrères européens.
“J’ai toujours du mal lorsqu’on me labélise designer américain. Cela ne veut strictement rien dire puisque le design américain est lui-même un slogan vide. L’Amérique n’est pas un style. L’Amérique est une idée. Et cette idée repose sur la diversité et la possibilité de trouver sa propre voie. Aux Etats-Unis, nous classons trop facilement les choses, ce qui limite les designers. En Europe au contraire, notre métier est apprécié et envisagé au sens large, le designer pouvant faire ce que bon lui semble, de l’architecture à la mode en passant par le produit ou l’image de marque.
Sant’Elpidio a Mare . Italy
Looking at Tod’s Leo is a project led by renowned architect Giulio Cappellini who called upon Marc Thorpe to re-interpret Tod’s iconic accessory. The identity of the Leo is rooted in driving. The concept for our Tod’s Leo was to inspire the feeling of movement. To help us communicate this we embraced the most important formal and stylistic detail of the Leo, the perforated rubber sole. Perforation in leather products as well as in architecture and automotive design functions for the transmission of air and light. We found that this was the perfect design detail to communicate the feeling of movement while relating to the formal and functional history of the shoe. The perforation on the base of the shoe continues to the top and graduates towards the heal. The gradation originates as larger perforations to smaller with contrasting color interior lining to allowing for the appearance of movement.
New York . NY
The Classic Car Club Manhattan was designed with the intention of creating an exclusive urban sanctuary for the members of the CCC. Located in a 13,000 sqft showroom in the heart of Soho, the CCC hosts a fleet of classic and exotic cars ready to be driven on the streets of New York. The design intention for the club lounge began with the materiality and architecture of the cars themselves, that the cars would be come an extension of the space and the space an extension of the cars. Materials such as steel, wood, leather and glass were used to translate this language down to the smallest detail. The spatial organization of the clubroom is weighted by a 16-foot long ribbed steel bar. The architecture of the bar and lounge is derived from the internal tubular steel frame and sheet metal body of an automobile. The custom bar stools are inspired by a mechanics workshop stool and finished in a blackened stained steel, solid walnut and fine Italian leather. The ribbed structure of the bar is translated into a linear canopy of warm Linestra lamps. Custom fitted to house LED diodes, which wash the ceiling in crisp blue light. The hybrid effect of these two types of lighting elements creates an almost perfect sunset as the spectrum of cool blues merge with the warm tones of orange and yellow.
Udine . Italy
HUSK is inspired by the outer shell of corn. The fields of corn punctuate the landscape of northern Italy, in particular around the city of Udine. Corn is used as a resource globally across all boarders and takes many forms. For Thorpe, this was an opportunity to translate the architecture of the husk from an ear of corn to produce a globally recognizable object for daily use. The design of Husk for the upholstered home collection of Moroso is offered in various sizes including dining and armchair versions. In addition, a new textile was design by Marc Thorpe and produced by Febrik for the collection of Husk exclusively for Moroso.
Fremont . NY
This project is currently under planning and development.
Briord . France
Vol de Nuit is Marc Thorpe’s debut project for legendary French design house Ligne Roset. Vol de Nuit is an exploration of furniture as “space” for the interior. Based on the architecture of 19th century birdcages, the round seating frame extends as an intimate space with overhead canopy and lighting element. As a space within space, Vol de Nuit offers a new perception of an existing space by altering its program, circulation and character.
Dakar . Senegal
The design of HUSK for the home collection of Moroso lent itself to the international sensibility of the outdoor collection M’Afrique, manufactured in Dakar, Senegal. Thorpe had the privilege to travel to Africa and work with the M’Afrique team to collaboratively develop the products for the outdoor collection.
"America is not a style, America is an idea," says Marc Thorpe
New York design isn't just about lighting. In the latest in our series of interviews with the city's designers, Marc Thorpe explains why multidisciplinary studios like his are the ones finding favour with European brands. Thorpe has set himself apart from a large portion of New York's designers, who primarily focus on high-end lighting design, by working across architecture, furniture, graphics and branding to build a successful business. He is one of only a handful of American designers that has managed to build relationships with large European furniture brands like Moroso and Casamania, while maintaining an international client roster that includes Coca-Cola, Mercedes Benz, Stella Artois and L'Oréal.
"Designers usually find themselves in this one realm of like 'I'm only doing product', or 'I'm only doing lights'," said Thorpe. "It's a question of limitation and if you talk to somebody in business, it's always about diversification."I always had a very difficult time being labelled an American designer," he continued. "My understanding of American design is that it's sort of an empty slogan – it doesn't really exist. America is not a style, America is an idea. And the idea was about diversification and having your own voice." He explained that New York's design scene is spilt between those like himself working across multiple sectors with international brands, and the "makers" who create custom products themselves and sell through American galleries.
Monterey . CA
Most vehicles are designed based on a standard litany of technological constraints. Infiniti vehicles come to life in a different way. They are inspired by a brushstroke. And that "Moment of Inspiration" is what leads to everything that is unique about the brand. The Shodo brushstroke is a metaphor for the Inspired Moment – for the burst of intuitive brilliance that lives in each of us and which can be inspired by nature, by a thing of beauty, or by a great car.
The Infiniti Moments of Inspiration pavilion, comes to life at Pebble Beach, during the 2010 Concours d'Elegance designed by Marc Thorpe Design. Guests encountering the pavilion are enveloped into an augmented reality driven interactive experience that brings to life the Infiniti brand pillars. The pavilion itself, following the principle of Takumi, is designed to exemplify the human perspective of the brushstroke and that help guests experience the moment of inception that comes from the physical gesture. The pavilion and its elements are metaphorical articulations of structure derived from contemporary roadways, the undulating hills of natural landscapes, and the Shodo brushstroke itself.
Marc Thorpe was asked to design a limited edition bottle for Coca-Cola to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1915 bottle. The design of the carafe is directly inspired by the architecture of the original 1915 bottle. The frosted glass vessel appears to be suspended in space above a high polished darkened steel base. On the base is the laser engraved logo of Coca-Cola.
Thorpe states, “I wanted to produced a form that not only reflects the historical references of the past but symbolizes movement toward the future.” The carafe’s inspired details include the exaggerated curvature of the 1915 glass body, frosted pale green glass, vertical top to bottom fluting and polished steel cap.
New York . NY
The L'Oreal concept store was designed with the intention to fuze a physical retail store with a virtual shopping experience. The store is composed of interactive touch screen technology designed to educate the customer on selected skin products. Products would be purchased virtually and either sent directly to the customer or available for pick up at the front of the store. The products are organized within the space by skin type pods to allow the customer to self guide themselves based on need.
New York . NY
Transform a gun, help save a life. Each year more than 17,000 American children fall victim to gun violence. It’s an epidemic. Liberty United transforms illegal guns and ammunition provided by police into handcrafted jewelry. Proceeds are donated to helping protect at-risk children from gun violence. Our mission is simple: Get illegal guns off the street remaking them into powerful symbols of action that you wear every day and donations that can save a child’s life; maybe even yours.
Marc Thorpe was commissioned by Liberty United to design the core collection of the brand. The designs of our men’s and unisex pieces bear a cross-hatch pattern inspired by the grip of a gun. Every piece bears the serial number of an illegal gun we’ve transformed. The collection is brass plated in rhodium, 14k gold, hematite, or rose gold. The black moniker disc in each piece is made of recycled gun metal and bears the Liberty United logo. Each is set into an octagon that evokes the barrel of the 1873 Winchester rifle.
Under Armour Experience Shanghai China . Awarded the 2014 Good Design Award.
The Good Design Award is regarded as the most prestigious world design award. The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design and Metropolitan Arts Press Ltd. present the Museum's annual GOOD DESIGN ® Awards Program for the most innovative and cutting-edge industrial, product, and graphic designs produced around the world.
HISTORY 1950-2014 - SIXTY FOUR YEARS
Now in its 64th year, GOOD DESIGN is the oldest and the most prestigious Awards Program organized worldwide. Founded in Chicago in 1950 by the former MoMA curator Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., together with such pioneers in modern design as Charles and Ray Eames, Russel Wright, George Nelson, and Eero Saarinen, GOOD DESIGN honors the yearly achievements of the best industrial and graphic designers and world manufacturers for their pursuit of extraordinary design excellence.
Nearly six decades later, The Chicago Athenaeum continues the organization of the program to create a revived awareness about contemporary design and to honor both products and industry leaders in design and manufacturing that have chartered new directions and pushed the envelope for competitive products in the world marketplace.
Annually, designers and manufactures in over 30 nations have been honored for their singular achievements in producing hallmarks of contemporary design. For over 60 years, everything and anything produced in and for the environment from a paperclip to a Boeing 787 Dreamliner or NASA Space Ship have been honored. The GOOD DESIGN logo was designed by Chicago designer, Mort Goldsholl, in 1950.
Brooklyn . NY
Our vision of the "home office" is one defined by a distant technological future, inspired by Acura's core brand themes. We've designed a minimalist space where Acura's principles of innovation, technology and moving forward are hyper-simplified. This space allows our bachelor to conduct his work quickly and efficiently because the ultimate luxury, of course, is Time.
We believe that the future is less. Less work. Less clutter. Simplified materials and media; through a few quick gestures he generates audio and visual expressions that allow him to speak to the world, and hear what it has to say. This is his communication, his office, his Clocktower.
We've created a multi-sensory space that acts as a metaphor for the car experience: the delicate blend of audio, visual and touch. As the centerpiece, we're fabricating a minimalist, sculptural work table: the ultimate icon of "the office." The form is sleek, inspired by Acura's clean lines. Our Esquire audience will be able to interact with the table, creating audio and visual expressions displayed for all to see/hear. Group participation is simple, efficient and encouraged to help everyone experience our vision of a future communication space.
Brooklyn . NY
The Pavilion 12 is perched on the rooftop of a 19th century warehouse building in the historical district of DUMBO Brooklyn. Marc Thorpe Design was commissioned to design a modernist pavilion to enhance the views of lower Manhattan and create a sophisticated yet flexible lounge atmosphere for the client’s private functions. The design solution called for two interlocking zones of activity. The first, a long axis cantilevered corridor, defined as the introverted zone, for interaction within the space. The second, a short axis bay, defined as the extroverted zone, for interaction outside the space i.e. maximum views of the Manhattan skyline. In section, the zones are defined by height, causing a spatial tension between the two zones of activity, the views toward the city and the sky itself. The structure is fabricated out of powder coated tubular aluminum with custom laser cut steel connectors and synthetic vinyl mesh screens. The furniture was produced by Quinze & Milan in Belgium.
PUSHING BOUNDARIES: MARC THORPE DESIGN
"Being uncomfortable is a normal state for entrepreneurs. You have to push yourself to always engage with the unknown," says Thorpe.
Marc Thorpe's professional blueprint was drafted early on. The ink on his master's degree in architecture from Parsons was barely dry when he founded Marc Thorpe Design in 2004. A decade later, he is the principal architect and lead industrial designer for his multidisciplinary design studio, working across disciplines from architecture and industrial design to digital media and branding.
“When I started my career, I had my hands in all sorts of different areas of design, including interiors, architecture, and product design,” he says. “And I was fortunate to have a handful of projects that really took off, and were directing me to go on my own.” Some of those early successes included interior spaces (such as the Manhattan Classic Car Club), interactive installations, and furniture designs for some of the world’s top manufacturers. “It was like I had been set in this direction and there was no going back,” says Thorpe.
Of course, that didn’t mean he didn’t have his doubts about striking out on his own while his colleagues were signing up for job security with established firms. “Questions go through your head—you have school loans, no health care, you wonder what you’re doing with your life. But at a certain point it’s sink or swim, and you do what you have to do.”
Udine . Italy
Baobab is inspired by the famed Baobab tree found throughout the African continent. The tree’s character is of a large wide trunk with a flat canopy of branches. The table’s wide based is produced in Senegal, West Africa, while the top is produced in Italy. The unification of the base and top via two continents, represents a symbolic relationship between Moroso and M’Afrique, the husband and wife team of Patrizia and Salam.
Vicenza . Italy
VISTO is the winning design of a private competition on the North-Western area of Vicenza, close to the city fair. The project is about the directional and commercial centre of the territory, consisting of a hotel, a kindergarden, services and parking lots: a mix of functions without the residential one. A concept that answers the real estate market’s requests with flexible solutions and, at the same time, it constitutes a landmark that adapts itself to the urban codes, guaranteeing a strong iconic value.
The theme of flexibility was the first request of the client and it was solved splitting the program in two identical buildings rotated from each other, containing all the functions scattered homogeneously. The relationship between the two buildings determines the quality of the urban space. The complexity of open spaces, covered spaces, "water-squares" placed at ten meters from the ground, reversible parking-squares and free-plan buildings, that can reach 40 meters of height, constitutes a strong image.
"Seeing and being seen" is the main principle that guided the design of a structure characterized by a system of green patios at all levels, a diffused greenery and a high sustainability guaranteed by the use of photovoltaic plates on the facade. These plates constitute a system of passive solar control and a system of energy production for the entire intervention.
In partnership with Geza Architects – geza.it
Marc Thorpe Design was commissioned by Bloomberg Business Week to conceptualized the womens bathroom of the future for corporate office environments. The restroom should be “a destination, a place you can escape,” says Thorpe. “There’s a table for women to put their bags, maybe grab a magazine. To the left is a lounge area. It’s a centralized place for communal gathering with pockets of privacy. On the perimeter are satellite wash stations.” The main wall features digital media. “It will be a screen of interactive glass making the movement of the water,” says Thorpe. “It’s intended to be soothing and feminine and cool. Behind that, concealed, are the actual stalls, with modern toilets and amenities.”
For the release of the new 2015 Chrysler 200, Marc Thorpe was selected to be featured in the Chrysler Born Makers ad campaign.
Born Makers reminds us that it's not just dreaming big ideas but also having the ingenuity and commitment to make them happen. It's an homage to American innovation, serving as a reminder that you don't have to cross an ocean for a car you're proud to have in your driveway," said Olivier Francois, Chief Marketing Officer, Chrysler Group LLC. "The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 embodies this ideal. It's a perfectly timed coming together of people, resources and spirit of the Chrysler brand."
The "Born Makers" commercials are narrated by Kevin Yon (the voice behind the Chrysler brand's "Born of Fire" commercial that debuted during Super Bowl XLV) and features Detroit-born artist/singer MoZella performing the vocals behind Bob Dylan's "Things Have Changed" track.
The commercial's visuals include footage of Chrysler Group's Sterling Heights (Mich.) Assembly Plant (SHAP), and its employees. The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 is designed, engineered and built with pride in Michigan. With a major investment of more than $1 billion, Chrysler Group's Sterling Heights (Mich.) Assembly Plant (SHAP), once slated for closure, sports an all-new paint shop using leading-edge technology, a new, fully robotic body shop and an upgraded assembly area, setting the stage for the world-class craftsmanship found in the all-new 200. The commercial ends with the "America's Import" tagline.
Udine . Italy
Ratio is a game more than a table surface. Designed as a concept piece for Italian design house Moroso. Ratio invites you to move and create your own unique surfaces for living. Starting from a platonic square, a series of 45 degree cuts begin to define the individual pieces. These pieces can be arranged in endless combinations to define the space. Conceptually, The theme of Ratio is generated from an understanding of systems theory and Gestalt Psychology. Simply stated, “the whole is more than the sum of its parts.” Each unit can be utilized to create multiple configurations and orientations, extending and linking the units horizontally (floor) through space to accommodate and create a network of various programs and activities.
The Wall House was designed as a private country retreat for a young Manhattan couple. Located two hours north of New York City on two acres of land, the house defines the property by two over extending walls. The walls frame the private two acre outdoor area, while simultaneously composing the interior program of the house. The ground level void of the house is oriented to the south, allowing for passive solar gain. Both the second level patio and roof are grass turf, designed to naturally insulate the home as well as reclaim lost outdoor square footage. The result is a house designed to shift the definition of context through its simulation of natural landscape. The walls act as a datum to define the relational unification of interior and exterior habitation.
New York . NY
In collaboration with digital media partner HUSH and IBM's agency Ogilvy, Marc Thorpe Design was asked to conceptulize a data wall. The IBM Data Wall was conceived to host data collected and visualized as interactive graphic content. The graphic data would be presented on a series of high definition touch screens. The architecture of the wall is designed in three stacked parts, Audio Bar, Video Block and Hardware Block. The top video block was designed as the extroverted visual presentation and the lower hardware block as the introverted hardware containment. The two sections interlock at 10 degrees and shift off center to produce a dynamic cantilevering composition encouraging interactivity and circulation around the wall. The Audio Bar, surround sound system cantilevers off the Video Block washing the user in an interactive audio experience.
Paris . France
Marc Thorpe Design was asked to conceptualize a limited edition package for French skin care company Vichy. The concept was to start with the original square packaging and use geometry to create an unexpected reveal of the product. The square package would distort as it is opened producing a lasting impression with the user. “We wanted to create an object that transcends its value as a package but more a work of art,“ states Thorpe.
New York . NY
Marc Thorpe collaborated with New York based leather craftsman and designer Moses Nadel to produce a limited edition collection of bespoke modern bags produced 100% by hand in New York City. We wanted to put hand craftsmanship forward as the guiding ethic for the collaboration. All designs were produced by hand drawing only and no computers were used in the process of design or fabrication. More on the company, MOSES NADEL offers limited edition leather goods made from exceptional hides from Italy. Embracing the tenacity and artistry of our legacy, our leather goods are crafted in New York from start to finish by the hands of a singular artisan: combining materials individually selected for their beauty, integrity, and structural potential.
Codroipo . Italy
The project involves the demolition of two extant buildings and the construction of two similar volumes in the same position, with totally new shape and structure. Moreover, they are mutually connected by a new extension. The new house is conceived as one building with no separation between the "extant" structures and the new ones. The longitudinal view illustrates the basic scheme of the operation: three floors are built on the site of the previous house, of which one is an underground patio. On the other hand, the extension has one floor "laid" on the ground. Therefore, the section has a 10 x 10 x 10 cubic metre volume and a far longer "tail" stretching among the trees.
What was previously a saddle roof is now a ventilated double-slab roof, and the volume of the first floor is emptied thanks to a large balcony with a cantilever roof, so that an outdoor room is created to enjoy the views over the opposite park.
The all-white house features large windows and internal and external sliding wooden shutters. The windows, along with the internal and external retractable screens, make an integrated system allowing different possible modulations of the indoor-outdoor relation. The compression caused by the quite narrow parcel is used and reproduced in elevation to create small different outdoor spaces.
On the other hand, the garage loses its volume to become an exposed concrete "sheet", which folds to serve as a support, lamp, roof and wall. Another key theme is respecting the trees in the parcel, which are only "grazed" and "approached" by the house and its protruding elements, but not pulled down. This means that the existing environmental quality is preserved and emphasized by the new construction.
In partnership with Geza Architects – geza.it
Marc Thorpe was invited to design a limited edition product for the reopening of the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum in New York City. The brief asked for a tool for living. Marc Thorpe and his team asked the question, what is the perfect tool and attempt to redesign it. The answer was a paperclip.
The paperclip, named the Deleuze Clip, inspired by the writing of French philosopher Gille Deleuze. responds to the traditional form and functionality of the paperclip but synthesizes the structure into a uniform body by activating a “folding” point or point of inflection.
Corning . NY
Marc Thorpe worked with Corning Glass Museum glassmakers to explore and prototype his design concepts in a public GlassLab session at the Museum’s Hot Glass Show on the Courtyard Stage. GlassLab sessions took place over the summer as complement to the Museum’s exhibition, Making Ideas: Experiments in Design at GlassLab. Using the immediacy of hot glass as a catalyst for innovation through the rapid shaping of forms and exploration of the unique properties of glass, watch as glassmakers and designers make ideas in these collaborative design performances.
Lenoir . NC
Area, a collection of tables from New Yorker Marc Thorpe, morphed from the concepts of spatial definition and positive/negative space in architecture. The invisible joinery gives Area a simple, yet elegant appearance, a chameleon for many different environments. Area is available in occasional and coffee table sizes in solid walnut in hand-oiled or paint finishes.
New York . NY
Marc Thorpe Design was commissioned by New York fashion house David Yurman to design a custom display table for their flagship boutique on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills California. The table was designed to enhance movement around the display surfaces by utilizing a deep cantilever to enable multiple users and a stronger physical and emotional connection to the jewelry on display.
For Dutch textile brand Febrik, Marc Thorpe Design collaborated to design and develop a new three dimensional fabric which fades from one color to another by only using the process of knitting. The project was commissioned by Italian design house Moroso to accompany the development of a new signature commercial seating system titled Blur. The fabric took three years to develop the technique, computer aided software and thread sourcing.
Udine . Italy
The cantilevered table is designed as a minimal pull up surface to accompany seating in the home and in the office. The table's design is an exercise in function dictating form. It is produced out of a single sheet of powder coated bent steel with an additional laser cut rib to add structural integrity. The wrapping articulation of its design, communicates a new relationship between table and interior furnishings and space. Thorpe states, "the table is as little design possible, that makes this table successful. The table is less about itself as an object and more about the relationships it creates, it is relational design."
Lenoir . NC
Facet tables are a delicate, yet structured interplay of glass and polished stainless steel. Resting on four tapered extensions radiating from a delicate steel column, the table-tops are available in glass, walnut and maple in a variety of finishes. Offered in round or square shapes in multiple widths and heights.
In conjunction with a new retail project with Under Armour. MTD designed and developed a new UA package design to be offered during the opening months of the store. The idea was based in the brand’s identity and slogan of “Protect this House.” Each package was defined as a “brick of the house” that the customer could have with the purchase of their clothing. The UA brick package aesthetic was designed based off the faceted geometry of the store front to reinforce the company’s presence outside the store experience as well as offer a limited edition souvenir for the visitors of the UA store.
The park is the project’s center. Every apartment has the day zone related to the green and and the night zone turned to the city and the walking access system. Every unit has a direct view to the park, underlined by a transparent continuous volumetry, with ample openings towards the green in the living room, and a more introspect and closed side to the bedrooms. All the living units becomes a garden house with an ample panorama over the new landscape, crowned by the rooftop villas and its hanging gardens. The volume, even though thought as a unitary building, has the ability to answer the surrounding demands with very diverse solutions. The objective is to assure the high level of privacy and living quality, in relation both with the existing buildings and the great park area, maintaining at the same time a connection with the context - and above all with via Campagnola – of non dominance and non invasion.
The building replicates the existing volumes in the angles, obtaining a more equilibrated scale report between the urban context and the new residential complex. The existing volume in the East angle of via Campagnola is emptied at the ground floor to make a great entrance portico to the entire residential complex. This portico becomes almost an urban space, a meeting point to the new residents which requalifies the entire street and allows the park view from the street. From this meeting point starts the walking paths to the units surrounded by the condominium green.
The intervention defines a new living quality which is born from the simple union between the city center opportunities and the tranquility that can be found in a huge “green heart”.
In partnership with Geza Architects – geza.it
University of Maryland . MD
The Mark Lounge was conceptually developed as a spatial study of solid and void through the programming of surface and the articulation of movement. The lounge is composed of 5 "positive" asymmetrical "pockets" of activity, linked by a "negative" passive transition space. The "pockets" translated into the program of the lounge, defined as the Entry Tunnel, VIP Seating, Main Seating, Bar and Bath. These pockets of activity are rendered in the space with a vibrant high gloss epoxy surface, which extends in a wrapping motion from floor to wall to ceiling, delineating it from the transition spaces, rendered as a rough muted textured surface. The Bar was custom designed to support a seamless spatial transition from the front to the rear of the lounge and is composed of a cantilevered steel frame and clad with a polyester resin laminate supplied by 3Form. The furniture, including the Lounge Seating, Bar Stools and Side Tables were custom designed for the space as flexible seating and surfaces, to allow for multiple configurations of interaction and use.
Lenoir . NC
Resting on sleek contours of polished stainless steel loop bases, Miura is a fully upholstered lounge series consisting of sofas, loveseats and chairs. Available in leather or fabric, a varied aesthetic is achieved when contrasting upholstery is specified for the seat and back.
For the relaunch of the award winning magazine BlackBook. MTD was asked to graphically rebrand the new site, develop the programmatic features and user interface. The design of the site makes reference to print through navigation, layout and UX. BlackBook is an arts and culture magazine published biannually and at bbook.com. Founded by Evanly Schindler in 1996 as a quarterly publication, BlackBook has now expanded to a circulation of roughly 150,000. The magazine covers topics ranging from art, music, and literature to politics, popular culture, and travel guides.
New York . NY
Blurred Limits, is an exhibition featuring the work of American Architect and Designer Marc Thorpe. The exhibition reflects the binding ideology of both Moroso and Marc Thorpe, to push the limits of technology, material, form and space. The exhibition is less about the objects represented but more about the relationships created between the objects and the individual. Suggestions of disappearance, deconstruction and relational design produce a body of work, which embrace the notions of Gestalt psychology, in that the “whole is more than the sum of its parts.”
New York . NY
CONCEPTIME is a product designed for the Nooka Zonal exhibition in New York City. Minimal wearable technology that displays the time in three dimensions via holographic projection off the glass surface.
Set in the Black Forest of Germany, the Sky House offers itself as a retreat from the everyday. Perched deep within the forest, with expansive views of neighboring tree tops, it can be understood as a tree house for adults. Three efficient programmatic elements comprise the house, Garage, Circulation and Living. The garage space is large enough for one car, from there one rises upward via a central circulation tower to the main cantilevered living space. The living space hosts a core service unit, managing bath, kitchen and storage functionality. The Sky House is a minimal, functional and efficient escape.
MTD was hired to design, curate and art direct a series of AR exhibitions for French technology firm Artifacto. The exhibition focused on the experience the future of digital 3D architectural presentation in real time and space. The exhibition presented the progressive and modern work of leading internationally acclaimed architects, such as BIG, Archi-Tectonics, HWKN, Jugen Mayer, Jakob + MacFarlane, REX, Dominique Perrault etc.
Brooklyn . NY
Marc Thorpe Design was approached with a new roof challenge, to design a private island oasis on top of the famed Gretsch Guitar building in the hip and trendy area of Williamsburg Brooklyn. The program called for custom lounge seating, semi-shaded areas, outdoor shower and a structure that took full advantage of the bi-directional views of Manhattan and Brooklyn. The solution was to take inspiration from the sky and the aircraft landing at New York’s LaGuardia Airport. The structure is design as a fuselage with an outer aluminum frame and inner wood skin. The lighting is integrated seamlessly into the skin of the deck to provide a rich glow to enhance the curvature of the structure. The furniture was designed to act as an organic "loungescape" to accommodate various types of seating and lying simultaneously. The seating can be assembled as a whole "island" or disconnected into parts to adjust to various seating conditions. The furniture was custom designed by MTD and fabricated by Quinze & Milan in Belgium.
For the launch of Luscious Jackson’s new album Magic Hour, MTD designed a limited edition poster for band member Gabby Glaser celebrating the bands reunion and concert at the legendary music venue Webster Hall in NYC.
Where I Work / Studio Feature
We visit New York City to check in on the Union Square studio of architect and industrial designer Marc Thorpe who manages to bridge the gap between architecture, design, and technology. Collaborating with the likes of Moroso, Bernhardt Design, Target, and so many more, keeps this firm continually producing cutting edge work that will probably stay ingrained in your mind. In this edition of Where I Work, let’s take a look around office of Marc Thorpe Design, where you might spot an adult beverage on the desktop and perhaps some Jay Z playing in the background.
What is your typical work style?
We pride ourselves on being regimented, focused, and efficient. We never miss a deadline because of this. I work best in the morning from 8am-2pm. I try to schedule meetings after 2pm. I try to never work at home; it’s like the separation of church and state. However, when you do have a day to work at home, it’s a bit of a luxury.