Bright, fresh, breezy, and nowhere safe to pick your nose or scratch your arse?

With the merits of cubicle or private office-free open-plan or ‘address-free’ (where desks are not assigned to any particular individual) workplaces being espoused by such titans of commerce as Google, Facebook, and eBay, it’s not surprising that a number of architects are getting in on the game with some pretty ingenious ideas (it’s that or just throw a load of cats in).

The architects at Japanese company Aki Hamada have gone one step further by designing and then realising not just a open-plan room but a full open-plan building in Ayase, Kanagawa Prefecture. The building itself is predominantly made of wood and, while some wooden walls can be slid about to reconfigure the space inside, the architect’s plans (as seen in the video below) suggest that the space inside is designed to be opened up to the outside world with the exterior floor-to-ceiling glass walls also movable.

Particularly interesting is the aforementioned use of sliding wooden doors to compartmentalise the space, reminiscent of the fusuma screens found in Japanese homes, allowing users to configure the office space to their needs.

▼ Earlier this year the building plans were realised.

▼ The flexible design has been noted by a number of architecture publications.

While the open to the outside element may sound the death knell for sleeping and online gaming in the privacy of one’s own cubicle, not to mention the inadvisability of the entirely natural if embarrassing picking/scratching actions mentioned above, it’s at least to be hoped that might be balanced out by the entertainment potential of errant birds, stray cats or lost pedestrians wandering into one’s workplace.

Source: Aki Hamada Architects via Fubiz