As Florian already told you this second day was really intense in discovery and knowledge. Nevertheless we should not forget that innovation is not only about science and market, but it is also closely linked to art. This is indeed the reason why we have our designers: add another dimension to our product and reinforce our value proposition.
So this day I went with our three designers to visit Parallel Lab (see http://www.parallellab.com/). Géraldine and Caroline welcomed us in their tiny firm created five years ago and told us their own story of Hong Kong and entrepreneurship.
First of all, one important thing to mention is that they are no business women, they are architects from the EPFL who started their own company following their intuition, their dream and their guts.
Really impressive is the fact that they settled in Hong Kong because they were intrigued by the back lanes, tiny public corridors between impressive buildings that the citizens have taken up in various ways. This phenomenon inspired them to design a portable chair for their research, which finally led to a book.
Moreover they are not the traditional architect, especially for Hong Kong. In fact they always balanced their energy between research and practice where they built various environments by playing with space and the spatial experience.
For example, one of their latest project is a working/exhibition space in Hong Kong for the Zurich University of Arts, which wanted to create bonds in this incredible city. This is where the idea of a tunnel connected the both city emerged, but the main difficulty was to create a flexible environment that could be used for very different occasions.
We went out of this interview fully inspired and convinced that art has its rightful place in innovation, sometimes as a business of its own or sometimes, like CHIC, as a crucial element of a diverse team.
photo by Mélanie