Vitra has a knack for offering furniture systems that are not easy catagorize, that don't fit easily into the types of furniture typically offered. For some it leaves them scratching their heads, but I always see new opportunities in their systems that allow you to have a different relationship to your workspace. To do things you can't do with ordinary office furniture. We'll study their things in upcoming posts, to learn about them, and to learn what we can take away from them.
I see possibilities like this in the Level 34 desk system. It is based on a sturdy steel framed bench, which also carries power and wires along the work station. This bench can be outfitted with many different configurations of shelves and cabinets, and even cushions. Then comes the desk, supported by the bench on one side, and a light leg on the other.
So what is this? Is it a powered bench, a credenza, a work station, a dining table? I could easily see this kind of piece integrated into a home office/living space doing equal duty as entertainment center and dining table. In a collaborative work space I see it facilitating social collaboration, meeting as well as task work. And its just dang beautiful to boot.
My only reservation is that I know it is not inexpensive. But we are looking at it to learn from it. The scenarios it suggests can be recreated even if you can't budget for Level 34. The Vitra web site shows many more applications of the desks and its great to see them installed in real situations. Browse it, download the PDF brochure, and file the ideas away for the future.