The corner: Arshad Faruqui

Architect and designer, Arshad Faruqui, shares his favourite space with us, his eclectic office at the design house Copper and Steel

Amidst the bustling streets of Karachi resides the striking office of Copper and Steel. A bright yellow wall catches our eye, we are amazed at this rare sight of colour in the otherwise bland street, eager for more alluring visuals this space already promises.

We are not disappointed. We slowly walk through the courtyard, ensuring not to miss a thing. First comes a glorious lion-head fountain, and then a dark blue wall where a yellow structure stands tall, demanding our attention. We reach the main door, and pause for a minute to admire the large wooden entrance, hand-carved with purple details. Finally we are inside the office, and make our way to the host’s most treasured corner, his private room.

He shares that this office has been with him for eight years, and he fondly remembers the first day this space became his, one of his most special memories. Though it is a professional environment, it is his favourite space due to the simple fact that he spends most of his day at his office, also home to his personal book collection.

Intrigued by the unique aesthetics in this space, we ask him more about his design philosophy, and the inspiration behind the interiors. “I don’t like to design, I like to put things together, that’s my thing. Nothing matches and that’s the idea,” he shares. Still curious, we ask him what his vision was for this corner. “My first thought was to build a space that reflects on my architectural sensibility. When someone walks into this office they know what they’re going to get. I don’t like very ornate things, the environment should be homely and down-to-earth.”

Various accent pieces are spread across the room, from a quirky chair featuring Andy Warhol’s work to handmade copper birds hanging delicately from the ceiling. We ask our host what objects are dearest to him. “Those two figurines were gifted to me by my kids on Father’s Day. All the artwork you see are gifts from people I have worked with.” He directs our attention to a frame hanging beside him. “I worked with a photographer on a book, and this is the first photograph he took for the project. I am somewhere in this, you’ll have to look for me, but after it was published, he gifted it to me. So as you can see, everything in this office is very personal, it’s difficult to pick one,” he smilingly says.

We leave refreshed by the space for its distinctive style and genuine character, qualities we conclude every personal space needs.

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