NewSchool of Architecture and Design’s (NSAD) new global design education initiatives are now underway with a fall quarter class on interior architecture offered through the newly created Domus Academy School of Design at NSAD. This inaugural class is being taught by Italian architect and interior designer Paolo Giachi, who is a visiting professor from Domus Academy in Milan, Italy. NSAD and Domus Academy are part of the Laureate International Universities network.
The Domus Academy School of Design at NSAD is being developed in collaboration with Domus Academy in Milan, Italy, which has been named by Businessweek magazine as one of the best design schools in the world. Giachi’s interior architecture class represents the first step in the school’s long-range plan to develop additional design-related programs, starting with a Bachelor of Interior Design that will be offered through the new initiative in 2013–2014.
Giachi brings to the NSAD classroom more than 16 years of experience in designing retail stores for luxury fashion brands such as Fendi, Louis Vuitton, Prada and Jimmy Choo in locations around the world. For his class, Giachi assigned his students—nearly all architecture majors—the task of designing a boutique based on similar budget and guidelines he is using to design a shop in Beverly Hills for luxury shoe designer Charlotte Olympia.
Students researched the client and brand to come up with concepts that would reflect the aesthetics of their interior design ideas through colors and textures. Lighting is also a key component of the design process for luxury brand retail shops and students had to consider layout and how to best showcase the client’s goods. Giachi emphasized the need to carefully design the entrance space with a clear vision for creating an emotional response.
“The second you enter such a space is the most important because you need to create a strong emotion, and if you don’t create that, then something is wrong,” Giachi said. “So you have to imagine what emotion you want to create and then decide which materials or techniques to use, whether it is, for example, a wall of glass, a mirror, a product display or flowing water.”
NSAD President Steve Altman said that Giachi’s interior architecture class is providing students with a chance to practice interdisciplinary skills, which is something the school has encouraged through the development in recent years of a construction management program and a digital media arts program. “Paolo Giachi’s class, and others we will offer through the interior design program, prepare students for global careers as they build on a strong foundation of design and engagement with the professional community,” he said.
Giachi’s class is scheduled to present their final projects Dec. 17 at NSAD. In November, NSAD announced a series of new global design education offerings being developed in collaboration with Domus Academy and Media Design School (MDS) in New Zealand, which is also part of the Laureate International Universities network. In addition to the collaboration with Domus Academy, the new global initiatives also include a revitalized NSAD digital media arts program that includes an opportunity for students at NSAD to study abroad at MDS and obtain a certificate of study from MDS.