the origins

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At Taskshade, we strive to create a new workspace, one where the natural and built environment coexist. We leverage design and research with intention to provide solutions that prioritize the health of people and the planet above everything else.

We love naturally lit spaces! But momentary glare from the sun can force the blinds down and they often stay shut for weeks. With Taskshade, there’s a new solution.

The University of Oregon is the birthplace of our passion for this solution. Research about human centered design and material and spatial studies about the benefits of daylight with glare management provided the foundation. Taskshade emerged at the intersection of architecture, product design, and digital arts. Provoked by some of the most talented professionals in the daylighting industry, we are ready to share our solution with the world.

Daylight impacts your circadian biology, which regulates your body clock and sleep and wakefulness schedule. Routinely spending 90% of our lives indoors under comparatively dim electric lighting disrupts your body clock. Taskshade will help you to satiate your appetite for daylight, and re-align your body clock.

Historically, it has been difficult to allow sunlight in our spaces without causing glare. Direct sun or indirect reflected sun glare can cripple our ability to see tasks or work effectively. If you shut the blinds to block the sun, you miss out on all the benefits of daylight and view.

Glare can negatively impact our physiology, increasing frequency or severity of migraines, eye strain and fatigue. These detriments can accumulate to erode our productivity. Dealing with glare can be quite the headache, but finding a designed solution doesn’t have to be.

You can have your cake and eat it too...well, you can have your sunlight and comfort too! Research shows that 90% of office workers prefer sunlight in their space, so long as they are free of glare. In open office environments, glare for someone often means all the blinds are closed, and there is no daylight for anyone. Taskshade helps open office environments deliver a basic human right, access to sunlight.

who we are

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A photo of Kevin Van Den Wymelenberg
A photograph of product designer Peter Van Liefde.

Kevin Van Den Wymelenberg

Kevin founded TaskShade LLC as a University of Oregon spin-off and start-up in collaboration with several design students. He is a Professor of architecture at the University of Oregon in Portland and Eugene and has completed over $17M in funded research on topics of indoor environmental quality, healthy buildings, and energy efficiency. He has consulted on several hundred new construction and major renovation projects with architects and engineers.

Peter Van Liefde

Peter is the visionary behind Taskshade. With a sophisticated yet humanistic approach to design and a love for sculpture, he brought Taskshade to life. As a product designer and thinker, he combines technical manufacturing processes with the art of human experience. 
When Peter is on a project it materializes into a beautiful functioning thing, and when you get your hands on a Taskshade you’ll feel the care and craft that he brings to life.

Maddy Jones

With a deep insight into the human condition and the words to express it, Maddy helped craft the original voice of Taskshade. She brought her understanding to the team to help guide next steps on how to engage with our audience.

Garrett Leaver

Garrett, the digital wizard. He has no problem conjuring up whatever creative ideas flow through his mind. With a focus on interaction systems and brand marketing, he brings life to Taskshade through his lens. Garrett imagines a world where play and experimentation are cultivated. He believes that design is a tool for creating opportunities and that architecture should let people feel free. His conceptual vision and experienced playfulness never run dry.

Austin Gutierrez

Overseeing the project on both macro and micro scales, Austin has been a driving force for us in these developing years. As an architectural designer, he brings a keen eye to the table when making important decisions. Whether that be brand development, product development or business operations, he always pushes the boundaries to show us just how much we’re capable of achieving.

Serena Lim

Serena was the first student Kevin hired to collaborate with on the development of Taskshade.  She and a team of students came up with countless early prototypes and material explorations. She also lead a team of students that tested prototypes in both informal and formal ways. This research included measurements to quantify luminance metrics and human comfort factors with a wide range of participants, settings, and Taskshade prototypes.

Griffin Gilbert

Kayla Swanson

Marisa Lappin

A photograph of the impeccable Austin Gutierrez.

thanks also to

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past students & researchers

Joe Smith
Jane Doe

consultants & advisors

friends & family

A large image of a glowing yellow Taskshade seen through some out of focus plants.