According to Eastern holistic philosophy, the individual, considered as a whole, is made up of parts that are continuously interacting with one another: physical, mental and spiritual. This approach argues that, in the absence of a connection between these parts, it is not possible to achieve a genuine sense of wellbeing.
Starting from this holistic approach, and from the simple supposition that a building and the nature of its rooms can influence the mental state and habits of those who use them, Monica Graffeo, with Martex, conceived the idea of “La Piazza” as a modern expression of the office, intended as a place of wellbeing.
If a space considers individuals holistically, people are inclined to work together for mutual benefit, and are supported by a genuinely creative process. Thus stimulating better results and positive interactions, naturally.
“Like seeds, metaphors have implications that germinate in relation to our individual and cultural situation. They carry implications through which we can highlight and organize particular aspects of our experience.”
(Sarah Robinson – Nesting)
In her book, the American architect writes about the value of metaphor. It is through metaphor, in fact, that architects express their freedom, in order to determine how a space will be experienced and perceived.
As a starting point, Monica Graffeo used the classic Italian piazza – a space full of variety and sensory stimuli – to express a new concept of the office.
The piazza has always played an important role in society for interactions among residents, a place for making decisions and maintaining and establishing connections. Around the piazza are places that complement the life of the community: spaces both communal and private, for relationships and for work.
Similarly to a town centre, the office layout must support and facilitate the appropriation of the space and the gathering together of people by creating a social hub that triggers positive connections, surrounded by functional spaces able to stimulate the different parts in each of us.
“Office layouts should be designed like an Italian piazza, creating fluid, non-predetermined spaces where work intersects with moments of creative lightness and personal interaction. Colours, shapes and materials seek to create a calm environment where people feel free to express themselves and work together.”