Usfin Atelier

George Livissianis

Usfin is a genderless hair salon that provides a platform for artists and designers to collaborate within. Set within the old Taubmans paint factory in St Peters, Sydney, the salon has been designed as a removable set of pods that can make way for art exhibitions, performances, fashion shoots and shows. It is also a space where these functions can co-exist.

The intent was to create an ultra modern, minimal and futuristic salon that redefines the traditional salon experience. George Livissianis began the design process by looking at mobility – aeroplane trolleys, freight containers and music cases. The aim was to create hair station ‘pods’ that could be wheeled in, opened up for an appointment and wheeled away again.

George Livissianis worked with case makers to create the customised aluminium-clad cutting pods and detailed their interiors to be minimal and functional. Each case plugs in via an umbilical cord, like an old telephone. It’s a ceremonious experience to arrive at a closed aluminium box and be in awe when the case opens to reveal the cutting station.

A range of functions had to be catered to – the wash areas, colourist tables, waiting spaces, cutting/styling area and storage space. The wash and storage spaces are concealed within a polycarbonate ‘box’ that acts as the backdrop to the cutting pods. An oversized entry counter functions as a large working table for classes and a colour-mixing lab on wheels. The material selection also allowed the designers to enhance the difference between the early 1900s warehouse character and the futuristic vision embodied in the salon.

Photography: Tom Ferguson.