Challenge Accepted

August 21, 2014

Intereum Principals, Bret Abbott and Matt Sveen, were nominated by Mary Schwartz for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. They accepted and Intereum will be donating to ALS, giving a total of $500 to #strikeoutals. They have nominated Candace Nelson, Mark Stuhlmueller, and Lou Reid of Herman Miller. You have 24 hrs to complete the challenge.

Our company outing this summer was a day to remember that included great people bearing Intereum shirts, beautiful weather and a cruise on Lake Minnetonka aboard the Queen of Excelsior.  The Queen of Excelsior hosted a wonderful staff who served ice cold drinks, a tasty taco bar and an assortment of sweet desserts. Throughout the cruise our knowledgeable captain told fun facts about the grandeur houses and landmarks that surround Lake Minnetonka, ranging from million dollar boats to the Pillsbury mansion.

Our summer outing represents how lucky we are to be surrounded by such wonderful employees who work hard everyday to make Intereum truly an amazing workplace!  Thank you to each and every person who made our outing possible and for making Intereum a great place to work day in and day out! We could not have asked for a more enjoyable afternoon surrounded by great people and a beautiful lake!

Here are some pictures of our day on the Queen of Excelsior: photo 1

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With successful concepts such as the Action Office and Living Office, recently Herman Miller has been researching and collecting information about incorporating nature-mimicking spaces that satisfy the human necessity for a connection to the natural world. Studies have confirmed that natural spaces enhance a meditative state of mind while simultaneously assisting in reducing stress. This research also showed that connecting with nature helps to rejuvenate the brain completely. But how could trees, grass, sunshine, and a little fresh air rejuvenate our brains?

Attention Restoration Theory (ART) helps to explain why nature can work wonders in rejuvenating our brains. Researchers from the University of Michigan explain that our attention comes in two ‘flavors': involuntary and voluntary. Involuntary attention is when something interesting captures our attention, while voluntary attention is when we focus to complete a task. As described by the researchers of the University of Michigan, nature is filled with vibrant stimuli which captures our attention in a bottom-up fashion, or a way that first examines the finer details and then the big picture. The striking, involuntary attention capturing effects of nature can give our brains a chance to replenish when it comes to a top-down approach, or looking at the big picture first and then working out the finer details. However, designs implementing nature aren’t simply beneficial to the individual office worker– it can be a sound economic investment, too. An exercise that applied biophilic (nature oriented) work spaces found that if incorporated into many New York City offices $470 million would be regained in productivity value.

Rosalyn Cama, president of Cama, Inc., an interior planning and design firm, describes her passion for finding work place solutions that implement nature-mimicking spaces. Cama explained an experiment she uses on groups at a national convention in New York. Cama asks the group, “‘Imagine a stressful time in your recent past. If you could escape anywhere in the world to help reduce your anxiety, where would you go?’ For thirteen years, Cama has continued to ask the same question and she finds that 95% or more usually select an outdoor space. She then proposes another question asking why they chose the space they did. Many reply explaining their destination as calming, stress-free and serene.

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A combination of both Herman Miller’s Living Office and a biophilic environment could create this leisurely space that over 95% of individuals desire. The combination could implement a space where office workers enjoy the space and look forward to work that harmoniously mixes a calm, functional, stress-relieving, collaborative and productive environment. The Living Office alone creates a natural physical environment that exposes a generous amount of natural light and brings a communal sense to the everyday office. Herman Miller’s Living Office combined with even more biophilic elements could enhance productivity by rejuvenating brains and creating a space that each person looks forward to working in. The future for both Herman Miller and the standard, everyday office is starting to look very green!

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logo Certification

We are especially excited to spotlight a recent project that Intereum had a strong role in furnishing! Located in Edina, Minnesota, Tara Kaur, DDS, PLLC is one of the first 100 dental practices worldwide to successfully complete the EDA’s GreenDOC program in order to achieve the Eco-Dentistry Association’s Gold Certification. A small group of dental offices meet the association’s highest standards due to strict expectations in pollution prevention, waste reduction, water and energy conservation, and a holistic, wellness-based practice. EDA’s GreenDOC program encompasses over 180 eco-friendly initiatives ranging from the physical office space, dental processes and materials, and administrative/community outreach methods implemented by the office. From this vast list, Tara Kaur, DDS, incorporated a multitude of initiatives reaching a total of 331 points thus earning the Eco-Dentistry Gold Certification—the first dental practice to earn the certification in Minnesota.

Examples of Dr. Kaur’s initiative to maintain an ecofriendly practice include focuses in reducing water and energy consumption, implementing green building materials successfully, and reducing and nearly eliminating all sources of waste. As a prime example, Dr. Kaur’s office utilizes digital imaging and digital patient charting, which reduces landfill waste and exposure to radiation by as much as 90%. Dr. Kaur said in regards to their certification, “We know our environmental problems are serious and each of us needs to do what we can to be part of the solution. As an EDA Certified Dental Practice, we are able to provide our patients with the highest quality of dental care while incorporating the highest standard of planetary care. We are thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful community devoted to being eco-conscious.”

Staff

Prior to earning the certification, Dr. Tara Kaur’s goals remained in creating an ecofriendly environment that supported a holistic relationship between ecology and economy to create a sustainable approach to the practice of dentistry. Tara Kaur, DDS, develops dental protocol on an individualized basis to provide the best solutions for each patient. With a dedication to sustainable dentistry practices and patient satisfaction, Dr. Kaur’s practice works to provide an upgrade in overall well-being. The Tara Kaur, DDS, team ensures an experience that is promotional of an overall healthier lifestyle while promising a metal-free, fluoride-free, mercury-free, and anxiety-free experience.

A peek into the eco-friendly Tara Kaur, DDS office courtesy of Brandon Stengel from Farm Kid Studios:

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Congratulations Tara Kaur, DDS!

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Sam's scramble for sight

Egypt Valley Golf Course

On Monday, Herman Miller’s CEO, Brian Walker, hosted the second annual Sam’s Scramble for Sight at Egypt Valley Country Club. However, this event wasn’t simply schemed up out of thin air–it derives from Brian Walker’s son, Sam, who was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease that deteriorates photoreceptor cells within the retina. With lack of options to slow the progression of the disease and no cure, the result can be either total or near blindness.

With golf, lunch, dinner and an auction to finish off the day, Sam’s Scramble for Sight is an event that raises funds for the Wynn Institute for Vision Research at the University of Iowa. DR. E. M. Stone, MD, director of the University of Iowa’s Wynn Institute, has played a large role in the progression toward a cure and options to slow the effects of the disease. His role isn’t restricted to the United States however, Dr. Stone continuously plays a worldwide role in the eradication of human blindness. Dr. Stone spoke at the event emphasizing the Wynn Institute of Vision Research’s work, their progression forward, and their passion to find a cure. This year, Sam’s Scramble for Sight raised over $450,000 in donations received from both individual donators and event sponsors! Intereum assisted in the success of the event by partaking as a sponsor at the Silver Level.

 

Sam and Stone better

Sam Walker and Dr. E. M. Stone

Seen in the photo below, Bret Abbott (left) and Matt Sveen (right), Owners of Intereum, were in attendance at Sam’s Scramble for Sight on Monday. Both Bret and Matt described how wonderful the event was–from scoring two under par to mingling with the Walker family and other sponsors, the two had a memorable time.

Bret and Matt

Bret Abbott and Matt Sveen

Bret, Matt, Brent and friend

Bret Abbott, Matt Sveen and friends at Sam’s Scramble for Sight

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Founded in 1902 by Russian immigrant Louis Maharam, Maharam Design Studio expanded and became a company working strictly in theatrical costume and set designs in the 1930s-1940s. However in the ’60s, Maharam discovered their niche in designing performance-driven textiles for commercial interiors. For over fifty years now (and one year as a part of Herman Miller), Maharam continuously creates designs suited for commercial and residential interiors. Before joining the Herman Miller family, Michael and Stephen Maharam stood as fourth generation owners. Yet at this time, the company’s focus was aimed more toward Architectural & Design firms. Thus a shift in focus spurred a new culture within Maharam with design as the cornerstone. With a focused brand message, Maharam embraces a breadth of disciplines ranging from product, graphic, and digital design to art and architecture which coincides seamlessly with Herman Miller’s values and passion for quality products and results.

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Louis Maharam

Throughout Maharam’s dominant journey in the commercial and residential design industries, Maharam has worked with some widely known and talented designers: Paul Smith, Hella Jongerius, Irving Harper, and Konstantin Grcic. Alongside these designers, Maharam works closely with A4 Studio who has assisted in building Maharam’s visual identity. A4 Studio designs Maharam’s cards, invitations, notecards, iPad home screens, Maharam’s own personazlied font and many other things.

Paul Smith

As a fashion designer with a keen eye for trends and fashion, it is no surprise that Paul Smith took interest in Maharam’s designs. He quickly took action and began to incorporate some of Maharam’s designs into his clothing lines. When described by others, Paul Smith is a fashion designer who creates designs that encompass the idea of ‘classic with a twist.’ Paul enjoys creating pieces that are perfect for any occasion but are more than meets the eye. For example, Paul creates men’s blazers that are perfect for a night out, a business meeting or wedding reception. The outside is sleek and sophisticated while the inside tells a different story. He chooses diverse and fun patterns that are not usually seen inside a men’s blazer to keep them original and whimsical.

Paul Smith Designer

Paul Smith Design

Hella Jongerius

After graduating from Design Academy Eindhoven (the Netherlands) in 1993, Hella joined the design industry. Early in her career her designs were produced by a Dutch design collective Droog. Hella Jongerius’ design style prefers imperfection to create an original piece and an eclectic feel. Working with textiles, furniture and ceramics, Hella has incorporated her artisanal style into the industrial process—giving each design a unique touch.

Hella Jongerius

Hella Jongerius Design

Irving Harper

Irving Harper, recently celebrating his 98th birthday, has exuded an extraordinary talent for paper sculptures throughout his design career. In 2013 Irving collaborated with Herman Miller and Maharam to produce literature highlighting the intricate details and delicacy of both his talent and creations. With over 300 paper sculptures of various sizes within his home, Irving relented the idea that these paper sculptures represent an outlet for stress relief from about 1964 up until 2005 when his home couldn’t fit anymore.  According to Maharam, it is evident that at age 98 Irving is, “still young at heart” with a vibrant imagination.

Irving Harper

 

Konstantin Grcic

Konstantin Grcic is an industrial designer with a passion for both technology and materials, and a strict discipline in careful design and architecture research. Currently with Maharam, Konstantin has been designing bags alongside his textiles, furniture, lighting and other requests by clients.

Konstantin Grcic Konstantin Bag

Maharam also made an appearance at NeoCon 2014–a huge event for the company. This year at NeoCon, Maharam debuted their entrance into the rug market by displaying new rugs along with their textiles and designs. Regarding their show floor,  Maharam stated that they prefer to let the product speak for itself by showing the least amount of items at their best advantage.

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According to Finnish designer, Eero Aarnio, “A chair is a chair, is a chair, is a chair…but a seat does not necessarily have to be a chair.” And this is exactly what he was aiming for when he created Puppy, a seat or decorative sculpture (your choice) that combines function and whimsicality for Magis Me Too. Featured in both vibrant orange and off-white finishes, and two different sizes (small and medium), Herman Miller‘s molded plastic Puppy is an imaginative and efficient accessory that captures a playful spirit along with striking colors and character.

Seeing how fun these puppies are, how could Intereum not adopt four of these captivating pieces? Located at both our front and side doors are a pair of Herman Miller Puppies–one medium sized orange Puppy and one small sized off-white Puppy.

 

HM PupsHerman Miller's Puppy

 

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