Helen Agustine Studio: Filling the Blanks

By vira

Helen Agustine, the founder and design principal of the former architecture and interior design firm, Seniman Ruang (2016-2023), is currently establishing her own design company, Helen Agustine Studio, based in Jakarta. Her focus lies in integrating architecture and art into one spatial experience. Helen’s involvement in IDD project demonstrates her expertise at balancing functional and emotional design aspects whilst adopting cultural and modern influences.

STORY BY Vira Tanka | PHOTOS BY Nicky Setiadi

How did you initially involve in the IDD project?

When I was still helming Seniman Ruang in 2021, we were approached by Agung Sedayu Group to design the central portion of the site plan and the architectural design of the small retails and F&B tenants, includes 1/15, GIOI, Periplus, etc. The surrounding tall structures, designed by DP Architect, were already in place. Our scope also included the hardscape and ponds, though not the statues.

Subsequently, I continued working on the project under my own flag, Helen Agustine Studio.

What was the brief, and how did you translate it
into the design?
The client sought an area that would exude dynamism and inspiration, attracting not only homeowners but also designers and contractors. They wanted something vibrant and playful. So, we came up with an organic site plan, incorporating non- symmetrical round shapes to evoke this energy.

We used a lot of rattan and wood. It’s important for us to explore the materials because we wanted the architecture to inspire visitors since there are a lot of showrooms of building materials.

Tell us more about the restaurant design.

All the restaurants are single-storey structures, intentionally designed to not obstruct the visibility of neighbouring stores’ signage. Inspired by Indonesian vernacular architecture that consists of three main parts of a building (head, body and foot), the surrounding landscape is sloping, forming the foot, above it is the body and the roof is the head.

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