A branded house for a house of brands
The interior experience at Publicis Groupe is an interplay between workplace and wellbeing; commercial office and hospitality space; and brand and authenticity.
As visitors enter the Harris Street lobby, the Publicis name dissolves in a light form artwork that reflects the landscape courtyard opposite. This begins the interplay between brand and experience that weaves throughout the interiors.
Publicis is both a house of brands and a branded house, with 17 separate marketing, communications and digital transformation businesses in the group. Striking a balance between these competing hierarchies led to the creation of a ‘high street’ that wraps the atrium on each level. As the glass lifts rise through the atrium, each company presents its own ‘shopfront’ portal. Entry to each brand is through a backlit polycarbonate pavilion, containing finishes unique to the company and communicating a powerful expression of their brand. These elements can also be changed as the businesses change under the parent brand.
As a foil to the branding, the atrium edge walkway is a place of transition between the brands. This journey is a respite within nature, engaging with the suspended garden and lined with a striated timber ceiling.
The heart of Workshop’s interior is the landscaped atrium. This atrium is designed to enhance the physical and mental wellbeing of its inhabitants through the provision of natural light and ventilation, not to mention a highly sensory experience. Dappled light from the glazed roof passes through six levels of hanging plants to reach the garden at lower ground. A background soundscape of water follows one through the naturally cooled space while a steel stair connects the staff across multiple floors.
At the northern edge of the atrium is a mixed mode space with an operable façade that can provide fresh air to staff breakouts on each level. Each breakout has a subtle theme that appeals to different demographics within the business. A French café (for a French business), a wintergarden and a games room. The breakouts encourage staff to migrate across floors, coming together as one strong social community.
The main work areas form two rectilinear flanks down either side of the building and showcase large, mullion-less, picture windows. The space is an authentic expression of the building’s structure curated to provide an inspiring work environment. The uplighting of the exposed concrete soffit encourages indirect light throughout. The mechanical and electrical services in each bay are carefully set out as a design element that gives a gentle rhythm to the workspace.
Sydney | Gadigal Country, Australia
Anson Smart, Felix Mooneeram