Co.Design

Design Crime: An Office Shaped Like Lady Parts

An architecture studio in China makes the Playboy Mansion look like a nunnery.

China is where perfectly good architects go to do perfectly bizarre architecture. Which might help explain the horrifying aesthetic of the Shanghai studio of Taranta Creations.China is where perfectly good architects go to do perfectly bizarre architecture. Which might help explain the horrifying aesthetic of the Shanghai studio of Taranta Creations, a small firm with Italian, Dutch, Spanish, and Chinese architects. The showpiece is a staircase smack dab in the middle of the first-floor work room that leads to a second floor with a gaping white void painted red inside. Taranta says it's "reminiscent of a large droplet of water ready to fall from the ceiling." Uh, yeah. If a "large droplet of water" looks exactly like a vagina. Forgive us for being blunt. But seriously. Once you see it, you can't unsee it.

The stairs rise to a second work room, with four desks recessed into the floor (and painted red inside, natch). At first, it seems like a bright solution to a niggling problem: There wasn't enough ceiling space to build a decent second story, so the architects simply cut into the floor. The issue, though, is that anyone walking around up there is actually walking on someone else's desk. That's especially bad news for the ladies. As a commenter on Dezeen points out: "I feel sorry for the short skirted secretary who has to walk around upstairs amoungst [SIC] the employees sitting at the desks."

The look of an architect's office can't be overstated. It gives clients a preview of the kind of work he's capable of. But with a studio like this, we fear the only client Taranta will attract is Larry Flynt -- or the prime minister of Italy.

[Images courtesy of Taranta Creations; hat tip to Dezeen]

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4 Comments

  • citizenconn

    being sunk in to the floor like that makes me claustrophobic already. you could start off every morning by running up and down the stairs. might give you a rush

  • Jonathan Westberry

    Incredible.  I almost think those desks would make me want to put my feet up on the table... I mean floor.

  • Matthew S

    I find it really odd that the fulcrum of this article is that this looks like a vagina. Especially when, subjectively, it really doesn't. It also suggests that this would necessarily be a bad thing, even though that's more an issue of taste and morals than of the design-criminal mind. The side view of the stairs on their official website would push anyone on the fence back into the territory of thinking it looks like an innocent raindrop... hopefully. ( http://www.enrico-taranta.com/... )

  • Joel Blair

    You'd think with all this effort they would have given the staff enough leg room to sit comfortably at their desks. I'm also not feeling the coffee maker-a/c-fridge-microwave area.