Infinity Surfaces x SCAPE ‘Thought Experiments’

1 Collaboration, 100 Designers, An Infinite Future. Curated by Infinity Surfaces and SCAPE Magazine as a collaboration event, ‘Thought Experiments’ brought together 100 discerning minds to the beautiful setting of Springvale Country Estate in KZN. It was clear on arrival that these esteemed developers, architects, and interior designers were at the epicentre of design events in the province – one which was unlike anything seen on these shores before.

Greg Gorge presenting on First Impressions in architectural façades

The most inspirational speakers waited in the wings to inspire an edge-of-your-seat experience, and mingling begun instantaneously amidst the estate’s pristine clubhouse, thoughtfully mirroring the day’s forward-thinking intentions. Even the seating was awe-inspiring, with hand crafted, exquisite furniture pieces built just for this auspicious occasion by Ballito-based Kipekee Studio. All of this was set against a backdrop of our finest Infinity Surfaces large-scale slabs to set the scene for inspiration.

LEFT: Cameron Finnie, Director at Engine Architecture (left), Jess Binns, Director at Hector & Bailey, Julia Rutherfoord, Director at Julia Rutherfoord Architects, & Lisa Rorich, Owner & Director at Lisa Rorich Architects.RIGHT: Kay Kay Ribane, Director of Usurpa (left) & Kylie Bornman, Owner & Interior Designer at Kipekee (right).

Thought Experiments presented an innovative perspective for the guests. Delegates from across the province poured in to take their places, while Humble Coffee ensured that the aroma of the finest coffee filled the air. It was then time to journey through three thought-provoking talks and an engaging panel discussion – hosted by seven of the biggest local industry icons.

To start the string of excellent discussions, Greg Gordge from the award-winning Elphick Proome Architecture kicked us off with First Impressions, an intricate exploration of the cutting-edge advancements, creative possibilities, and transformative potential of contemporary building envelopes.

LEFT: On the creative agenda, guests experimented with Brunch ‘n Blueprints – an architectural speed sketch challenge to conjure up the most imaginative façade of the future! RIGHT: Lisa Twyman, Owner & Interior Designer at Lisa Twyman Interiors (left), Lisa Rorich, Owner & Director at Lisa Rorich Architects (middle), & Helen and Patrick Ferguson, Directors at Ferguson Architects (right).

Gregory Katz from Gregory Katz Architecture then brought the heat with Provocative Paradigms – an investigation into how buildings channel the unique power to evoke an arresting, visceral reaction and how disruptive design thinking reaches beyond the norms while simultaneously contributing to problem solving. Rounding up the stimulating selection of seminars, Interior Designer Lisa Twyman from Lisa Twyman Interiors looked at how design thrives when weaving a thoughtful narrative in her talk: Starting with the Story.

LEFT: Gregory Katz sharing his take on Provocative Paradigms. RIGHT: Lisa Twyman offers her insight on a strong design narrative in her presentation, Starting with the Story.

While everyone was brimming with ideas, the guests took a break and indulged in a mimosa from the wine bar sponsored by Spier Wine Farm. They also enjoyed a carefully curated brunch, soundtracked to the groovy beats by local musicians Matt Davies and Tim Lewis.

Post-seminar celebrations with bubbles sponsored by Spier Wine Farm.
LEFT: With everyone in their seats, and endless views to admire, it was time for a meal fit for only the finest delegates, courtesy of Phil’s Food. RIGHT: On the menu: A Smokin’ Salmon Symphony.

The gripping Trends and Forecasts Panel titled Experimenting with the Future that followed created a never-before-seen space on stage for an architect, a developer, an interior designer, and an artist to uncover the next big thing. Here renowned industry movers and shakers Nathan Iyer from Iyer | Urban Design, Dean Young from Nexxagen, Victoria Wood from Mobius, and Kay Kay Ribane from Usurpa endeavoured to forecast the future, from design trends and materials to what clients might want in the decades ahead.

The thrilling Panel Discussion – Experimenting with the Future with Dean Young and Nathan Iyer (left), Kay Kay Ribane (middle), & Victoria Wood (right).

As the start of great things to come, Thought Experiments set in motion a path to something new and revolutionary. After a day that launched infinite brilliance, everyone departed with both an exquisite gift bag brimming with local treasures and goodies, and a critical question left in their mind: How will you embrace the experiment and use your future-forward ideas to influence this bold wave of industry-altering momentum?