Ideas-driven design studio with an expressive outlook that extends from the city to the sideboard. As this website shows, our broad portfolio includes many building types and a wide range of furniture, making us unusually capable of creating unique environments with full FF&E. We also specialise in work to existing buildings – what we call ‘radical refurb’ – as being an area of design with enormous potential for originality.
Projects like the Hoxton Hotel in London, for which we developed the branding strategy and the internal masterplan, and the hugely successful Wallop restaurant at Glyndebourne Opera are indicative of our ability to think and do. Our studio team is composed specifically to benefit from disciplinary crossover, and includes qualified architects, interior designers and product designers.
We cut our teeth in Japan where we built over twenty-five projects including three new buildings and many shop and restaurant interiors. Well know buildings include the Geffrye Museum in London, the Hubs in Sheffield and The Wall in Tokyo.
Though spatial design is at the heart of our practice, this translates naturally into furniture, lighting and object design. Some 150 of our pieces are in production, including our own line Nigel Coates that launched in 2015. We have ongoing connections to many design companies in Italy and the UK including Alessi, Ceramica Bardelli, Fornasetti, Gebrüder Thonet Vienna, Glamora, F.lli Boffi, L’Abbate, Potentino, Slamp, Terzani and Hitch Mylius.
Research projects such as Ecstacity have underpinned much of our work; they build on narratives drawn from the city as a living organism, and substantiate an experience-based approach to design. Whether theoretical, strategic or implemented designs, we build the team with the right skills for the job, and always encourage a full exchange of ideas throughout the process.
‘‘Whatever the space or the object, Coates will fill it with passion, irony and instinct.’’
Nigel Coates Biography:
Nigel Coates (Malvern, b.1949) has consistently challenged the meaning of architecture and the object. His mission is to bring equal parts of art and intelligence to architecture and design; whatever the space or the object, Coates will fill it with passion, irony and instinct. After training at the Architectural Association, soon Coates became an original design force, with many of his ideas drawn from the ‘confusion and excitement’ of urban life. His inventive narratives have translated into many buildings, interiors and exhibitions around the world, particularly in Japan and the UK. More experimental work has been shown in an art and design context, including Ecstacity at the Architecture Association (1992), Mixtacity at Tate Modern (2007), Hypnerotosphere at the 2008 Venice Architecture Biennale, and Picaresque at the Triennale Design Museum (2012). He is much in demand as a designer of lighting and furniture, collaborating with many Italian companies including Alessi, Ceramica Bardelli, Gebrüder Thonet Vienna, Fornasetti, Fratelli Boffi, Glamora, L’Abbate, Poltronova, Richard Ginori, Slamp, Terzani and Varaschin. Examples of his work are held in several museum collections including the V&A in London and FRAC in Orléans. His book ‘Guide to Ecstacity’ was published by Laurence King in 2003 and his latest, ‘Narrative Architecture’, was published by Wiley in 2012. He is also a leading light at the new London School of Architecture.