TREADING ON TRENDS
Mannington’s new carpet collection was inspired by the sights and sounds of the city.
By Robert Nieminen | Photography courtesy of Mannington
Joey Shimoda envisions the future as a place where “architecture will be invisible ... where we can be anywhere we want at any time.” If it sounds like a page out of a sci-fi script,
it is; Shimoda references Star Trek’s virtual-reality
“holodeck” in describing how the built environment will
take on hyper-realistic characteristics in the near future.
“I think designers will be relying much more on
realistic visioning processes to create and deliver
design,” Shimoda noted. “What I mean specifically
is the virtual reality goggles that allow people to be
in a space with hyper realism. I am not sure it is a
good thing for designers, but if it raises the quality
of the built environment then that is a good thing.”
For now, the celebrated L.A.-based architect—
and founder/chief creative officer of Shimoda Design
Group—has a lot of irons in the fire, with core and
shell, master planning, as well as interiors and
product design projects on the boards.
Among them is his recent collaboration with
Mannington Commercial on the Traction Avenue
carpet collection, which debuted at NeoCon.
Inspired by the streets of Los Angeles and his
love of automobiles, Shimoda said, “The patterns
are reminiscent of treads on a tire, creating a certain
flow, and it also has an underlying comment about
streets, and living in an urban condition.
“The other aspect we explored is color—we
are probably a little out of sync with the trend of
super chromatic bright colors but we liked the idea
of pushing colors into a richer range,” he explained.
“We graduated the planks to get an almost iridescent
effect. In some carpets it almost glimmers.”
Although designing carpet may not push the
limits of reality (yet), technology played an integral
role in the success of Traction Avenue.
“In our case the utilization of new cutting plank
technology as well as the integration of state of the
art carpet looms allowed us to get to real solutions
fairly quickly,” he said. “But the ideas and effect of
the design required more time and experimentation,
so in a way, the technology allowed us to create
more options which allowed us to understand and
sharpen the design possibilities.”
Joey Shimoda and the
Shimoda Design Group
drew inspiration for
Avenue Collection from
the streetscapes of
industry and art found
in the eastern side of
downtown Los Angeles.
The carpet plank features
a remarkable color palette
well-suited for corporate,
retail, higher education,
and hospitality spaces.