The Edgeless School: Design for Learning


Sage and Coombe Architects, Hyperakt

Practice Area


The Center for Architecture


Project Vision

How have today’s educational environments shifted to accommodate our unprecedented access to information? How is today’s school in some sense “edgeless” as students encounter seamless and fluid new technologies and media tools? How have architecture and design adapted to both influence and reflect these changes?

The Center for Architecture, home to the New York chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) is a hub for those interested in design and the built environment. Hyperakt worked with the Center and with architecture firm Sage and Coombe on Edgeless School: Design for Learning, an exhibit highlighting innovations in the design of educational environments and how new approaches to learning are being interpreted and facilitated by architects. The architecture and furniture displayed throughout the exhibit promoted transparency, collaboration, and use of technology, all at the cutting edge of education design. The exhibit’s design shifted boundaries and spilled over edges, challenging viewers to think differently about the space and recalling the sort of digital edgelessness we all experience.

Project Details
Big type, flying desks, and expansive photomurals capture the spirit of this exhibition. For me, the vintage school desks suspended from the ceiling over a three-story atrium-like space is the outstanding idea. It's what I will remember most, right down to the green apple on each desktop.
Juror 1
This tackles a very topical issue around learning spaces for the 21st century.
Juror 2
The hovering historical desks are cleverly mirrored by the contemporary classroom chairs below. The viewer is sandwiched between these experiences and immersed in media and text-driven information. The strength of this project is the animation of all planes of the space. The graphics feel fresh and free of the constraints of the environment.
Juror 3
Design Team

Exhibition Design: Sage and Coombe – Jennifer Sage, Peter Coombe (principals in charge); Skye Beach (project designer); William Bryant, Andrew Kao, Julia M Leeming, Sara Murado (designers)Graphic Design: Hyperakt – Josh Smith (creative director); Margaux Le Pierres, Aymie Spitzer, Wen Ping Huang, Deroy Peraza (designers); Ambika Roos (project manager)

Design Firm

Sage and Coombe Architects, Hyperakt

Project Area

2,200 sq ft

Project Budget



Duggal Visual Solutions (printing of subway posters, panels, adhesive vinyl, cut vinyl), Avery Dennison (vinyl material), Shaw Contract Group (carpet), Steelcase/Waldner’s (desks and smartboard), Tim Pearson (carpenter on model bases, wall work), Canal Plastics (television holders), 4over4 (postcards), Recycled Paper Printing (exhibition guides/green books), Hyperakt (graphic design)