The Caland Lyceum in Amsterdam Osdorp is a state school with more than 1500 students from a wide mix of cultures. It is a so-called LOOT school with special coaching for top sporters. The designers of i29 used this as the inspiration for the interior design of all the public spaces in the new building.
jaspar jansen and Jeroen Dellensen, both interior designers, where asked to make a proposal for the main hall, the staff room, the library and the ‘mediatheek’ (a room for computer interaction) in the new building of Bos&Partners architects.
One of the problems that can arise in a school with this kind of complexity and volume is that the large number of students and teachers makes the school anonymous and indifferent, with all its consequences. The special attendance for sports in this school gives it a chance to distinguish itself from other schools, and therefore an own identity. The school is proud of well-known Dutch sportsmen- and women who were taught here. This is apparent from the large pictures made of these sportsmen, displayed in the entrance hall. i29 has translated this distinguishing mark into the interior design. Tables, benches, and display signs are finished in bright yellow, red, blue coloured polyester and associate with sports teams moving over their sports field.
Since the atmosphere of the building itself is quite dominant with its grey bricks, glass walls and labyrinthine floor plans, i29 chose to dissociate the interior design from the building itself.
Subsequently the furniture became the most important instrument to create the interior. They designed a series of tables, benches, wastebaskets and displays made out of polyester with metal frames. In some cases soft fabric was used as backrest or seat in the same colours to soften everything. This is especially so in the staff room where the furniture did not have to be so vandal proof. The colours yellow and blue return also in the even cast floors.
The furniture can often be used in several ways. Benches and tables in the great hall, for instance, are made in several heights in order to sit, lie, hang, or lean against them. Displays are hanging or standing in this and many other spaces. Most of the furniture is mobile in order to be able to rearrange the space every now and again. It also articulates the space. Especially in the main hall a flexible position is important, because of its multifunctional use. In the mediatheek and the staff room the interior is more fixed. The computer tables in the mediatheek are designed as a stretched piece of furniture and form a rhythmically articulated element against the wall. In the centre of the space are some fixed objects which house some specific functions such as a coffee bar, a sitting area with magazine display, a meeting place and an object for storing books with integrated seating. In the staff room a wall unit with post compartments and pantry separates the hall from the sitting area. The fixed elements in the mediatheek are designed as a continuous angular movement. The space is clearly structured and places are created that define the use of the space.
i29 has, with the interior of the main hall, the mediatheek and the staff room, contributed to expressing the specific character of the school in a playful and fresh way. The Caland Lyceum is able to distinguish itself hereby from other schools and strengthens the feeling among students and teachers that they are part of a very special school.