Built by Vancouver-based molo Design, Softwall is a wall like no other: 400 layers of honeycombed fire-retardant paper some six feet tall, one foot thick and anywhere between eight and twenty feet long. The ends are finished in a simple wool felt, with velcro fasteners to link multiple sections. Stand Softwall up, unfold the accordion-like structure and there you go: a sleek, stylish room divider that is as much sculpture as it is partition.
Most intriguing is Softwall’s ability to unite and divide at the same time. It is, after all, a wall; its purpose is to bring privacy and separation to what was once open space. But because it is translucent, Softwall invites a certain sharing of that space as well. Its dense folds absorb and deaden sound, but they won’t close you off completely from what’s happening on the other side.
All of which makes Softwall an appropriate name. With Softwall, boundaries become fluid. As Softwall bends to accommodate an architectural feature or curves to accent a piece of furniture, right angles give way to undulating curves, and the cold, dehumanizing office cubicle becomes a cozy cul-de-sac of personal space. In this, Softwall tears down walls as much as puts them up.