Design Milk, a digital magazine showcasing modern design ideas for the home, interviewed Knoll Design Director Benjamin Pardo on designing a flexible work from home space that adapts to living and working, allowing him to stay creative and energized throughout the day. "With more than thirty years in the design world and the last fifteen with Knoll where he works closely with the likes of David Adjaye, Antenna Design, Formway Design, Marc Krusin, Piero Lissoni, Marc Newson and Rockwell Group, it’s no surprise that his workspace is just as impressive as his resume," writes Design Milk Managing Editor Caroline Williamson.
In the interview, Pardo shares his favorite design details and work from home habits that allow him to stay productive. Read an excerpt of the interview below.
How is your space organized/arranged?
I live in a modernist style New York City apartment, so my dining area also doubles as my “office.” I have a long D’Urso racetrack table on casters. Each morning, I create my workspace by positioning the D’Urso table perpendicular to my collection of design related objects, maximizing my surface area and creating a designated workspace. A suspended Alvar Aalto light provides extra visibility as the daylight fades away.
Once I’m done working for the day, I roll the D’Urso table to the center of the space, parallel to the wall, and it’s once again a dining table for six. This subtle spatial transition is important to delineate work and leisure hours.
How long have you been in this space?
Where did you work before that? Prior to the pandemic, I worked from our office in Midtown Manhattan and I am going back there for meetings as we begin to transition back to the workplace. I’ve adjusted to working from home, but I miss the social interaction and camaraderie of the office.
If you could change something about your workspace, that would it be?
I wouldn’t change a thing, I’m perfectly happy with my setup, and it addresses my creative needs. A home office can always improve over time, especially as your workflow evolves, but the important thing to keep in mind is that it should always suit your particular needs and space. To stay organized, I am partial to the Muuto’s playful Restore Basket using recycled plastic fibers; they’re great for document storage or to nest plants.