Where creativity meets colors — visit JUNIQE’s office
Art with character and inspiration at every corner: this is what defines JUNIQE. As a leading online destination for affordable, curated wall art and home accessories, JUNIQE is committed to helping customers make their house a home by bringing art into their everyday lives.
Today, we are stepping into JUNIQE's Berlin office to have a chat with its Chief Creative Officer - Martin Kranz. While showing us around Martin reveals few aspects of office design, explains JUNIQE’s work philosophy and talks about how remote working influences the creative process.
Can you explain the concept of JUNIQE’s office design? Is there a specific idea behind it? Any explicit design and work philosophy?
We were inspired by the JUNIQE’s brand DNA. We are a very colorful, young company and see ourselves as pioneers of interior trends, which is reflected in the design of the office: it’s friendly, open and modern and, most importantly, comfortable. It was very important to me that the space didn’t seem austere or cold, or too organized and strict. This translated into a bright color scheme, with a lot of geometric elements. It was easy to integrate noo.ma's products into the concept, since the brand has a somewhat geometric, playful, and experimental design language. At the same time, in addition to the bold colors, there are also some distinctly rich, deeper tones. Blue tones of the noo.ma's products in particular fit in well with our color concept.
It was easy to integrate noo.ma's products into the concept, since the brand has a somewhat geometric, playful, and experimental design language.
Martin Kranz - Chief Creative Officer at JUNIQE
What do you particularly like when you walk through JUNIQE's office?
I love that we have so many of our prints hanging on the walls. That's the core element of our business and mission, and what people notice the most. Personally, I really enjoy walking through the office and seeing the works by our artistic community. Every wall is full and offers something that will make you smile.
No argue that the space around us has a great impact on how we feel and exist. Can you tell us more about the most crucial elements in the office, and why were they chosen?
A good office and interior design concept thrives on coherence. The harmony between the elements is the most important thing. Of course, art is at the top of our list, but we wanted to assign a different design language to every meeting room. We gave them all their own aesthetics, style, and color scheme. For example, "The Maximalist" is exactly what you’d imagine: decorated with big and bold prints from the floor to the ceiling. There’s an eclectic collection of colourful chairs, and there are a lot of decorative elements. We also have a room which theme plays around the colour lilac, drawing most of its elements from and around that color. Other rooms are very pattern-heavy – so we really had the opportunity to get creative here!
Speaking of getting creative – during the pandemic we had to change the way we work and I’m wondering is remote working even doable on a regular basis in creative brands like JUNIQE? Is this an opportunity or rather a challenge?
Remote working is definitely both an opportunity and a challenge for me, and for us as a team! At the beginning, I definitely saw it as an opportunity, but after almost two and a half years of remote working I can say there are simply things that work better when you’re together in one room. At the same time, it’s important to keep the balance: it's great to have the opportunity to work from home, especially when you need peace and quiet for certain tasks and need to work undisturbed for 3-4 hours. But for anything that has to do with brainstorming, finding solutions together and developing ideas, working remotely is incredibly difficult. The non-verbal communication , which is super important, is often missing in video calls. My conclusion: I think it's more of a challenge than an opportunity. But it also depends on the position and the team. If someone is doing customer service, it's certainly easier. On the other hand, keeping the social component is more difficult:ou sit there and work case after case, and after three months you're at the end of your motivation, because the social, human exchange at the coffee station or in the hallway is simply missing. It's the mixture that makes it fun!
How many people share the office? Is the space more of an open-space interior or rather a divided plan for specific purposes?
We currently have 55 employees at JUNIQE. There are allocated desk areas for each team, but if you want to work from a different space in the office, that's fine too. Many spaces are defined as casual spaces for working together. We want to engage our team to use and share the space and to meet their colleagues in different areas of the office. So the office is definitely an open-space interior! I also believe that the design of the office goes hand in hand with our values as an employer. I can’t imagine someone knocking on a door to talk to me. It's really important for me to be approachable and close to my colleagues.
In which part of Berlin is your office located?
We are right at the border between Mitte and Kreuzberg. It's a pretty cool spot because you have all the restaurants, cafes, and bars in Kreuzberg within walking distance. On top of that, you are connected to everything, and have the Ostbahnhof station right around the corner. The office is located in an old industrial building, which brings in quite a bit of history: it sits on a street that used to straddle the border between East and West Berlin. The area is changing a lot, and there’s constant construction and new businesses moving into the neighborhood, making it quite exciting here! It looked completely different when we moved into the office a few years ago.