This month’s creative space is Emulsion, an architecture studio in Baker’s Yard; a little-known 1980s industrial estate in Clerkenwell, tucked away at the bottom of Back Hill and just down the road from The Eagle; reputedly the first ever ‘gastropub’.
Door bell for the studio Emulsion share with Matteblak and Studio Baer
They’re on the top floor, in a double-height space they fitted out themselves, which used to house a display showroom for retail shop fittings for the likes of Woolworth’s so was set up as a dummy shop complete with crisps and stationery.
A peek into Emulsion's studio
As the doorbell indicates, Emulsion share their space with Studio Baer
, who specialise in graphic design and art direction; and boutique construction firm Matteblak
resulting in a buzzy, creative environment where there’s always something exciting happening. In fact every other Wednesday evening, their mezzanine level plays host to a life-drawing class.
Spruce plywood and black MDF library / display wall
They’re big fans of skills exchange – the joinery above was built by cabinet and joinery outfit En Masse Bespoke
in return for the design of their showroom. (If I tell you that the black MDF boxes spell out ’emulsion’ in alphanumeric binary, you’ll understand just the levels of design geekery we’re dealing with here! I don’t even know what alphanumeric binary is!)
And their fleet of office bikes are by Japanese bicycle company, Tokyobike, for whom they have designed two pop-up shops; last year in Spitalfields and this year in Shoreditch (now on in Rivington Street).
Cement-fibre board, & exposed timber structure, concrete floor
One of the things I really like about this studio is that the ‘architecture’ is really on show; it’s got a sort of constructional honesty that seems appropriate for an architecture studio.
These lights, which are intended for wrapping around trees, are strapped to the beams using seat belts!
The resource library’s very utilitarian Slingsby boxes hide a wealth of material samples ideal for browsing industrial supplies; within galvanised workshop shelving.
As part of Clerkenwell Design Week
this year, Emulsion created this beautiful installation called ‘Lepidoptera Chromaticity’.
Lepidoptera Chromaticity, installation for CDW
A nearby digital printing company donated 3 days’ worth of their waste material (usually recycled) and Emulsion turned it into 250 origami moths using colour registration test sheets; the space is defined by the drops of waste paper from end-of-rolls, and a bed of shreddings serves as a garden.
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Further reading for the especially geeky: