The Russian designer Anna Erman lives in the country with her family and has bought and renovated a flat in Moscow’s Stary Arbat, not just as a foothold in the city but especially to help build relationships with her clients. The habitation was designed for dual use, public and private: the island unit in the kitchen can easily be turned into a desk or hold a buffet for twenty or so people. The entire project was conceived to fire the imaginations of her clients and others, by rehabilitating the fine existing structures and the ad hoc furnishings and decor created with an extremely personal touch.
Like offices, other aspects of “outdoor” life creep between the domestic walls: from shopping to physical activity and entertainment and enjoying art, with apartment rooms turned into temporary exhibition spaces.
This shift from outdoors to indoors is happening in parallel to a shift in the opposite direction, with aesthetic and relational codes finding their way into public places. From retail – where more and more shops and restaurants are reworking their interiors to provide welcoming, intimate and informal experiences that are designed to make people “feel at home” – to workplaces themselves, which are evolving at an equal rate, intercepting and harnessing the changes taking place.