FreelandBuck’s Witty Redesign of Hungry Man’s L.A. Office
The eponymous partners of the bi-coastal FreelandBuck met in grad school at UCLA. They founded their six-person firm in 2010, with David Freeland based in Los Angeles, where he teaches at SCI-Arc, and Brennan Buck, a faculty member at Yale University, in New York. “We try to make engaging spaces that are also challenging or provocative,” Buck says by way of summarizing the firm’s philosophy. The pair, who speak of layering in all its physical and theoretical manifestations, have recently garnered attention with their multicolor installation at the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in Washington, DC, which riffs on 19th- and 20th-century tromp l’oeil ceilings. The firm was also just named a finalist for the 2018 Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program.
There were two challenges in renovating the L.A. headquarters of Hungry Man, a film production company quartered in a midcentury warehouse that had been converted in the early 2000’s. One was reconfiguring the private and shared workspaces in an interior where much of the existing infrastructure had to remain. “The other was to create an environment that better evokes the lighthearted character of Hungry Man, which is cool, creative, and playful,” Freeland says.
The solution was a series of room-size boxes, their MDF surfaces incised with CNC-cut “drawings” that create the illusion of spatial depth. The furniture, also designed by the firm, is another expression of wit that is endemic not only to the client’s brand but to FreelandBuck’s as well.