THE MODERN WORK ENVIRONMENT IS CONTINUALLY MEETING THE DEMANDS OF AN EVER-CHANGING WORKFORCE. OPEN WORKSPACES OFFER EMPLOYEES AN ARRAY OF AMENITIES TO ASSIST THEM IN THEIR JOBS. EXCEPT ONE: PRIVACY.
Images By Patrick Coulie
Studies from the University of Sydney and UC Berkeley found that lack of speech privacy was the number one complaint among cubicle workers and open-plan employees, with more than half citing it as a major problem. That makes sound the single biggest factor in improving workplace privacy.
Expanding upon the story on workplace privacy (“Behind Open Doors”) in our current issue, we look at Submaterial, founded by designer David Hamlin in 2006. The New Mexico-based firm hand craft their pieces (which include wall coverings, screens and décor panels) with a variety of natural materials such as cork, leather and sustainable felt to help minimize noise in the modern environment.
Here’s a focused look at the newest line of acoustic-surfacing wall coverings created by Submaterial, whose Figure No. 1 is featured on our cover. These aide in one of the key solutions to work place privacy: absorbing, blocking and covering sound.
Offering a strong graphic surface via its wool felt face and customizable to any space, Vertical Bar’s strength is via a thermally-formed acoustic panel which is both moisture resistant and light in weight. It’s designed to minimize or hide seams between units allowing for a continuous installation piece.
Bold and linear in appearance, Horizontal Bar boasts the same wool felt face and features as Vertical Bar and is equally as customizable. Both are available in a variety of colors.
A close-up look at the Bulb wall covering highlights nestled lines and airy design. The standard size of 116” x 34” for each of these pieces means floor-to-ceiling application in many situations, and the designs are easily extended or framed with additional felt-faced sections.
Named for its fluid, dripping lines of nestled felt, Rain is another high performance, thermally formed acoustic panel ideal for workspaces. This and the other wall coverings from Submaterial offer panel designs that can be easily installed using direct glue or z-clip mounting, trimmed to size with a simple utility knife.
Hex continues the theme of bold geometric patterns from Submaterial’s line of wall coverings, this time with graphic concentric forms.
The asymmetrical tile angles of all of these acoustic panels allow for the creative deployment of shapes, patterns and voids. The wool felt design is naturally sound absorbent and availability in a variety of more than 60 colors allows endless customization.
Read our full workplace privacy feature here.