Here Comes The Sun
Bay Brown -- Interior Design, 11/1/2005 12:00:00 AM
Sun Chemical manufactures a product that is at once ubiquitous and discreet. Whether in the packaging of Skittles or the paint of a Mercedes-Benz, the 200-year-old company's inks and pigments are a constant presence in the everyday landscape. Now, the same also goes for the company's headquarters, located in a 1980's office park in suburban Parsippany, New Jersey. As part of an overall Gensler interiors job, senior designer Dicie Carlson of the firm's graphics-and-branding arm, Studio 585, injected the vibrant Sun Chemical identity into a sea of gray panel fabric and faux ferns.
In the ground-level reception area, visitors are introduced to the company through a mural-size timeline printed with intersecting swaths of CMYK and RGB colors, as the printing trade refers to them. (That means combinations of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black versus red, green, and blue.) "The mural plays on the basic science of the printing process," says Carlson.
Up on four, the main floor, color again leads the way. Sun Chemical Red enamel blazes out from wall panels at the entries on either end. To distinguish them, Carlson designed focal walls right inside, in colors that are either warmer or cooler. The four nearly identical office quadrants are demarcated by black-and-white murals accented by a different CMYK color. In a pantry for executive and finance departments, another mural depicts a bright-yellow field of rape, which lends its oil to some of Sun Chemical's vibrant products.