June 25th 2010 is an important step in group8’s history. On this occasion, the office celebrated its 10th anniversary of its architectural and creative practice in Europe as well as in Asia. This important period in group8’s professional career has been fed by intense research, work, passion and collective investment in the architectural field. Those last ten years were marked with important encounters, which helped us to make our way, to develop our activity and install us as a real enterprise thanks to the confidence that we have been receiving. On June 25 2010, group8 revealed its project of new offices, the Cargo. This project embodies our spirit and identity in a space. 
Industrial hall, raw containers and exotic romanticism
 group8 settled down in its new workspace on May 20 2010. A former industrial hall, near from the centre of Geneva (Switzerland), hosts these new offices designed in order to make the best use of the 780sqm and the 9m of height. This white and luminous space contains a hidden treasure: 16 shipping recycled containers. All of them have been travelling all over the world on thousands of kilometres through oceans of the globe. Piled up as giant Legos, the containers were left “as found” without any outside cosmetic transformation. This aesthetic keeps the poetry of their former use and differentiates them from the immateriality of the big neutral space they lie in. Concretely, the use of containers represents a gain of 200sqm, while making good use of the height. By re-appropriation, or following Marcel Duchamp’s idea of “ready made”, these monumental objects acquired a new function. Modern objects and industrial space both recover a functional use which turns them into contemporary living and working spaces. The containers formalize structured collective spaces. Each container embodies a collective form or a situation of our work: meeting rooms, cafeteria, lounge zone, bathrooms and showers, etc. The other half of the scheme is in opposition with the containers’ structured zone: an open space enlightened by natural light coming from the glass-roof. This informal meeting space gathers all the employees together, which generates a strong synergy of work. This second zone is composed of informal meeting spaces (exchange spaces) that are radically differentiated from the containers’ privacy. The white open space gives shape to a neutral environment, necessary to a creative work. The white furniture give a spatial rhythm through its differentiated skyline, like a small city inside the city. The non-repetition of patterns in the furniture design gives birth to a kind of miniature landscape, far away from habitual rigid office environments. The opening of this new work space represents an important event in group8’s life. As a new start, it contributes to keeping the partners as well as the entire team looking to the future. And group8’s near future is already fulfilled with many exciting projects!


25 photos and 3 drawings

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  • Kiril Pavlov
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