Location: PHILADELPHIA, PA, United States
Completion date: 2015
Artwork budget: $35,000
HOK’s recently completed 9,000-sq.-ft. office in Philadelphia was designed to promote innovation, sustainability and collaboration. With a focus on creating a healthy and productive workplace, the space was certified LEED Silver by the U.S. Green Building Council. The design team took advantage of the floor plate by installing expansive six-foot windows and locating conference rooms and open-office seats along the outer edge. Full-height glass office and conference room partitions help ensure that 96 percent of the regularly occupied space has views to the exterior and the majority of the workspaces have access to natural light.
The design team wanted a colorful, signature piece in the lobby that resonated with the Philadelphia region and its local culture. The commissioned artwork is the focal point of the main reception area and was created by award-winning Philadelphia artist Isaiah Zagar whose signature glass mosaic murals appear throughout the streets of Philadelphia. Zagar created a vibrant 150-sq.-ft. mosaic column featuring recycled tile and ceramics around the custom HOK logo in its signature color. Conceived as an expression of collaboration and commitment, the mosaic column reflects the many facets of HOK’s interdisciplinary businesses and varied client base as well as the way in which employees collaborate to produce award-winning design work. Featuring an assortment of design phrases, figures and abstract designs, it is also an expression of HOK’s new home as part of the fabric of Philadelphia.
HOK wanted a signature piece of artwork representative of Philadelphia for their reception space. Isaiah and Stephen both attended Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, so there was an immediate connection. Isaiah has built an extraordinary following for himself with his instantly recognizable style, and Stephen admires his eclectic spirit. The team, and Philadelphia-based contractors for the space, Structure Tone, thoroughly enjoyed working with Isaiah and his staff throughout the creative process. The piece is unique to the Philadelphia office and even has our logo embedded in the design.
The original opening to the space included solid chamfered walls and a recessed pair of glass doors. The space was designed to emphasize the direct link from the elevator lobby to the exterior and the views of Logan Square. To do this, HOK opened up the entrance up by pulling the corridor wall away from the column. The mural was always part of the design but the walls surrounding the building column were engineered so that the entire mosaic could be removed if the office needs to expand.