As a former Interior Designer, my aesthetic sensibilities have always won out over my more practical ones. If given a choice between an unsightly big-screen television and fine work of art, my decision was simple…beauty over function. Unfortunately, this isn’t practical for most the homes of today. Technology is becoming an ever greater part of our daily lives, not only in our family and media rooms, but throughout our entire home. The distinction between function over form can no longer be made. We have to encompass them both.

Luckily there is hope for those of us still clinging to the lost days of spaces which aren’t inescapably centered around an imposing grey box. New product lines which can achieve a marriage between beauty and function are being steadily introduced.

As a new employee at Architechtronics, I was highly impressed by this new technology which serves to, in a way– contradict its former self. Long gone are the days of the bigger, the better– the more imposing, the more impressive. (We all remember the audio ‘furniture’ of the 70’s and 80’s and those speaker towers and original big-screens of the 90’s.) They were as essential to any impressive media room as the sofa itself.

Technology buffs today realize that the truly high-end in technology has taken a dramatic turn from the obvious to the obscure– even the invisible altogether.

One of my personal new favorites, invisible speakers by Stealth Acoustics– quite literally becomes part of your actual wall. And no, I don’t mean in a traditional built-in sense; I mean actually part of the wall, concealed within the sheetrock itself, and under the paint. And if you’re worried about this affecting the sound quality, think again. These speakers give off the same rich quality and sound of that of any other comparable exposed speaker system on the market. Installation is much easier than you would think, and the options are extensive. Invisible speakers are truly the future of audio technology in the home.

As for those giant grey boxes….Yes, I’m talking to you flat screens! …We all know what a profound affect they have had on our home viewing and theatre experience. They have become the status quo and a standard to any room, not just the family room. Flat screens have enabled us to view our favorite programs in the kitchen, dining, or even bathroom! And though much smaller and less bulky than the original box style television sets, they still seem to demand a focal presence in whatever room they reside. Part of this is due to their habitual wall-centered placement in a room, directly in the middle or center, on or above a fireplace. They have replaced that beautifully placed piece of artwork or family photo as our wall’s central resident.

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To help take back the focal point of our spaces, Vision Art has created an ingenious new product which not only conceals a flat screen TV, but also transforms it into a piece of art or photograph. The design is simple. A small motorized mechanism located within a museum quality frame of your choice, rolls up your chosen artwork or photo to reveal the flat screen television behind. When you have finished viewing, it automatically rolls itself back into place, transforming the once grey blank box into a beautiful and more appropriate centerpiece for the room. The frame and sizing are completely customizable, as is the artwork or photo of your choice. There really is no excuse not to add this element of surprise and elegance to any room décor.

Technology had come a long way in the last century and interior design has adapted itself along the way. I am thrilled that we have at long last arrived at a point in the technology revolution where interior spaces are no longer making sacrifices in order to add function. Our home is the most important place in the world to us, and it should feel that way. With the help of this new turn in technology’s way of thinking, we can finally take back our spaces and turn them into what they should be first and foremost– beautiful.