My Studio™ _ Herman Miller Inc. USA

With Douglas Ball Inc. 2002-2006

In 2002 Herman Miller Inc. selected Douglas Ball to create his vision of the future workplace and system furniture. He invited Jeff Sokalski and Leon Goldik in Montreal to collaborated with the development team from Herman Miller. They worked together for just over four years to bring My Studio Environments to fruition.

My Studio Environments was introduced at NEOCON Chicago in 2006 and won Gold in the systems furniture category, and Best Of Show.

Throughout the duration of an almost five year period, we built a series of working prototypes in our Montreal studio.  In tandem, the team at Herman Miller USA, built three pre-production prototypes at the Design Yard in Holland Michigan.

Vivo Interiors™_ Herman Miller Inc. USA

With Douglas Ball Inc. 2007 for Herman Miller Inc.

Towards the end of developing My Studio, Herman Miller presented the opportunity to design in paralell, a second system to compliment My Studio and the Herman Miller line of systems furniture.

In the Vivo frame-and-tile system, steel frames define the workspace, provide the foundation for hang-on components, and house power and data. Tiles attach to the frames, allowing tremendous variety and control of the design and function of individual frames.Vivo Interiors borrows many design elements and architecture from My Studio Environments which allows the two products to integrate beautifully.

Lucy Seating _ Vecta/Steelcase USA

Douglas Ball, with his ongoing research into “the way we sit at work” was invited by Steelcase to produce the next generation of office seating.

He assembled a team consisting of Leon Goldik, Alain Deslaurier and Jeff Sokalski.

Over the next three years they produced several working prototypes which eventually became Lucy which was debuted at NEOCON 2000 which won first prize in it’s category as well as going on to win a silver from Business Week Magazine

Clipper CS-1 _ Newspace USA

With Douglas Ball Inc.

The Clipper CS-1 is a computer workstation designed for CAD operators or anyone else who
spends extensive time using a computer. The “capsule” like workstation resembles an airplane cockpit with everything in reach of the user.

The seat, back and foot rests all adjust to allow for an exact custom fit to a wide range of body sizes. There is a break incorporated into the seat that allows the user to position themselves perfectly in relation to the computer monitor. Air and sound control is also taken into consideration.

The Clipper began as a study into the perfect work environment with three working models built and
used by all the designers. Newspace in Fort Worth Texas put the final design into production and built about a hundred.

The design received critical acclaimed in numerous magazines from Architectural Review to Wired to Vogue magazine. The Museum of Design in London acquired one for their permanent collection as well as The Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, and recently The Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal.



With Douglas Ball Inc. for Canadian Aviation Electronics

Using fiber optic technology, the computer sends images which are projected on two optic displays positioned just ahead of the pilots eyes.

The alignment of these displays is very critical and highly dependent upon proper helmet fit.
Critical requirements that had to be met were that the helmet shell would be lightweight but at the same time extremely rigid to be able to support the loads of the optic mounts.

Numerous attempts were made to develop an accurate component mixture suitable for rapid set up yet allowing for even distribution of foam throughout the entire liner.

The ‘foaming rig’, shown above, was developed to ensure the precise positioning of the mold to the pilots head. Polyurethane foaming agents were then poured into the molds and instantaneously set to the shape of the head.


UQAM Security Console

With Douglas Ball Inc. For Université du Québec à Montréal

Douglas Ball Inc. was contracted by UQAM The Université du Québec a Montréal in 1995 to design and build a ‘Security Console’ which was to be installed in their newly renovated Pavillon Hubert/Aquin.

This workstation was designed to be used by two security personnel on a 24 hour basis. Their responsibilities demand a high level of concentration while monitoring fourteen surveillance video screens, performing telephone dispatch and fire prevention services. It was necessary to provide the user with a proper anthropometric surrounding, which would accommodate a range of people from 5′-3″ to 6′-3″. A high level of maintenance and upgrading is to be performed on a regular basis to the security console hardware and software. It was necessary to design a very flexible and accessible station where technicians could access computers while not disturbing security personnel. Complete working drawings were submitted of the design proposal for fabrication tender. Being a unique team of designers who are very comfortable building models and prototypes, we also submitted a quotation to build the unit. After all submissions were reviewed we won the fabrication and installation contract. The entire fixture was build in modules in our model shop, transported and installed in a rectangular 420 square foot room. All components had to fit through an access door 36 inches wide.