The design for this cafe fit-out stemmed from my interest in material compositions.  

I was thinking of ways to use a single material but with two different finishes to generate vastly different feelings. This developed into the concept of a steel cafe where galvanised steel linings would be placed next to pink steel linings to create a tension between harsh and soft.   

There was a distinct line formed between the galvanised steel used on the service area of the cafe and the pink steel which wrapped around the seating area. Harshly finished galvanised metal lines the display cabinets and serving counters along the entrance of the space. The cold grey tones and shimmering acidic finish gives the lining a brutal quality. The material is raw and along its sharp and bold forms, it is intended to act as the masculine presence in the cafe. The steel sheets have been folded with a subtle crease at regular intervals to give texture to the lining and show a pattern similar to that of scales or armour. Although hidden, the crease gives life to the material and helps it to avoid appearing flat.

The pink steel lining was formed into a series of concave panels which were hung around the seated tables of the cafe. Each panel has a tall slender proportion with thin sides and moves from a flat edge at the top of the panel to an inverted curve at the base. Positioned side by side, and in a long row, the panels wrap the entirety of the seated space like a long, continuous curtain. The soft pink finishing combined with the curtain-like form and delicate geometry of the panels is intended to act as the feminine presence in the cafe and provide a balanced composition to its harsh galvanised counter-part.
Project Info
Completion: 2019
Photos: Elizabeth Martindale
Builder: Gerard Dombroski