An Organic Approach to Office Interiors
Biophilia in its definition means “a love of life and the living world; the affinity of human beings for other life forms”. The concept of biophilia – a love of nature – is being translated into the design world. There is much more to this than just adding a succulent or two to the office and calling it good. With recent studies detailing the positive effects biophilia can have on our lives, more and more companies are trying to incorporate it into their office spaces, which is known as biophilic design.
As about 90% of our time is spent inside and usually in front of a screen, this trend is a response to the overwhelming time spent indoors. Incorporating biophilia is a great way to begin creating a healthier work space that helps to reduce stress and promote overall health. We have recently seen this design trend explode throughout commercial spaces as a simple yet effective way to increase the well being, productivity and cognitive function of those who inhabit a space.
Industry leaders around the globe are embracing biophilic design, a prime example is “The Spheres” at Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle. The introduction of these spheres in January 2018 is the ultimate depiction of the biophilic design trend in commercial spaces. Amazon wanted to allow employees to have a place where they could connect with nature in their workplace like they never have before, inspiring different ways of thinking and sparking creativity. This example depicts this on a much larger scale, but biophilic design works for any size space.
The Spheres at Amazon Headquarters in Seattle
Another favorite of ours is HELIS Offices in Kaunas. This office is an open layout, that features areas made for concentration. The interior is designed for the wellness of the employees. Check out the image below, featuring an entire living wall, ancillary pieces, a lot of natural light and of course, some lighting by BuzziSpace!
Offices without natural elements could be to blame for approximately 10% of employee absences, according to a study conducted by the University of Oregon. Not only that, the employees that participated in the study that had a desk without any outdoor views, took more sick days overall than those who had an outdoor view. Combining different biophilic elements can add dimension and enhance mood. For example, adding water to a space that has exposed wood and lots of natural light, can make for a simple yet effective way to incorporate biophilia into your workplace. The sound of running water is not only soothing, but it can mask sounds that would normally cause distraction, therefore enhancing focus work. A natural light source can trigger the release of endorphins, which can contribute to the happiness and creativity of those in the space.
Biophilic design is the perfect time to experiment with different mixed materials, textures, and colors to create a multi-sensory experience that benefits the workspace and those within it.