BUILD June 2017

58 BUILD / June 2017 , A Balance between Pragmatism and Spontaneity Abramson Teiger Architects, received the CustomResidential Architecture in the USA accolade earlier this year, as part of the 2016 BUILD Awards. They strive to create a world where architecture will elevate and inspire the human soul. This interviewwith the firm’s Melissa Miller, provides a short introduction to their work, and two case studies of workplace and residential projects they have worked on. Abramson Teiger Architects believes in leveraging old schools of thought, with the boldness of new. They enjoy an architectural challenge, indeed problem solving makes them better designers and allows the firm to strike a balance between pragmatism and spontaneity. They haven’t fallen into a niche and they don’t want to, because they can to bring bold ideas to traditional development models that haven’t become routine for them. Melissa Miller tells us about the firm and their passionate team, and introduces their approach to workplace projects. “What began as a small boutique operation has organically evolved into a robust firm of diverse professionals with an expansive range of expertise. Every member of our team is a true artisan. Our collective creative perspective includes global studies of cultural, artistic, and architectural treasures. “We are unceasingly observing and learning universal aesthetic qualities and we bring this knowledge and passion for visual grandeur to every project. With continued growth, our practice remains personal and purposeful – we always bring a rare human touch to an increasingly corporate landscape. “In terms of our workplace projects, we enjoy the architectural journey of seamlessly layering existing brand values into impactful design ideas. We strive to create inspiring workspaces that not only serve as a visual delight but also as a fluid space in which employee interactions can exist in the most enjoyable way.” About workplace projects, one was for HUGE, a worldwide digital marketing agency, wanted to foster a unique office environment in their Los Angeles location. The aim of this project was to convey the balance between the agency’s technological sophistication and their free-spirited collaborative culture as Melissa goes on to explain. “Having designed various HUGE offices in major cities around the world, the team here at Abramson Teiger Architects wanted to tailor this office to the Southern California lifestyle. With the employee’s well-being at the forefront, the ATA design team carefully planned the space to allow for synergetic interactions between people (and their beloved pets). “The result is a casual and balanced environment where both analytics and creativity flourish. Clean white elements are juxtaposed with warm reclaimed wood to symbolically capture the essence of HUGE. Yoga mats and reading materials are readily available in staff lounge areas. A café features a communal table and a custom reclaimed wood backsplash for added interest.” Turning to residential projects, by way of background, the firm’s designs are inspired by an earnest desire to elevate the human soul, to facilitate connection, and to improve the lives of the people they serve. Melissa then sheds light on this fascinating point and offers her thoughts on the firm’s work on the Cohen residence - a Hollywood writer’s family treehouse. “It is true to say that we often focus on abundant natural light, sweeping views, and open floor plans to invite the limitless possibility of the world inside. With an established Hollywood career and a busy family, Etan Cohen looked to create a space that served both as a creative home office and as a playful refuge for his wife and kids. Having written screenplays such as Tropic Thunder, Madagascar, and Get Hard, Cohen’s comedic and approachable personality served as inspiration for the ATA design team. “Upon entry, one is greeted by an impressive three-story atrium, accented by steel-framed glass floors and topped with pitched roof ceilings. A living tree is stationed on the ground level, sprouting up through the multi-tier stairwell. The space is configured as a loft-like modern treehouse with an inverted floorplan, positioning the primary living spaces on the top floor for maximum light exposure. “On the basement level is Cohen’s home office – which embraces the more industrial aesthetic of the surrounding building materials. The space is graced with natural light that trickles down through the home’s transparent layers, something 1701BU09