Springtime holds a special place in the heart of New Yorkers; as the city thaws and NYCxDesign draws ever closer, the annual reveal of the Kips Bay Decorator Show House never fails to kick off the season on a high note. This year was no exception. A total of 23 designers overhauled the 22-room, 12,000 square-foot Upper East Side residence chosen to host this year’s Show House.
The show of top talent in architecture and interior design draws thousands of visitors per year to benefit the Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club. Each designer was given seven weeks to completely overhaul their assigned rooms in the residence, which opened to the public on May 2 and will remain open through May 30. Kohler, AJ Madison, Hearst Design Group, Morgan Stanley, Benjamin Moore, Cambria, The Rug Company, The Shade Store, New York Design Center, and Schumacher sponsored this year’s Show House.
Highlights from the transformed property, located at 36-38 East 74th Street, include Sheila Bridges‘ delightfully playful Salon des Chiens near the entryway. What would traditionally be the home’s reception area was transformed by Bridges into a space for dogs and their walkers to clean up after outings about the city and relax.
Upstairs, designer Young Huh turned the top-floor aerie into a feminine artist’s studio. According to Huh, the “environment of strong silhouettes, bold strokes of color and pattern,” celebrate the act of contemplation and creativity. A floor-to-ceiling collage—a wallcovering by Fromental—is evocative of Cubist master George Braques, while eclectic artwork from Cynthia Byrnes Contemporary Art compliments the mood of playful exuberance.
Humanscale’s Todd Bracher talks about “Bodies in Motion,” his interactive installation in partnership with Studio TheGreenEyl at Salone del Mobile 2019, which allows users to materialize their movements onto a light-generated figure on a screen. See it in action here. Video by Steven Wilsey and James Eades.
With WantedDesign 2019about to get underway in two distinct venues—Wanted Brooklyn at Industry City (May 16-20) and Wanted Manhattan at Terminal Stores (May 18-21)—we asked co-founders Odile Hainaut and Claire Pijoulat about the fair’s theme, its new student design awards, and the second year of its bespoke Look Book at the Manhattan edition. The duo, both born in France, worked in the design and art fields before founding WantedDesign in 2011 to coincide with ICFF (International Contemporary Furniture Fair) in New York. The event is now an integral part of the annual NYCxDESIGN calendar.
Interior Design: How would you describe the 2019 theme of “Conscious Design” in the context of the Manhattan and Brooklyn editions of WantedDesign?
Odile Hainaut and Claire Pijoulat: In 2018, “Conscious Design” was defined as a leading theme to present sustainable projects that foresee what the future can be, if supported by creative vision and smart decisions. In 2019, the notion of conscious design will be encouraged and more widely highlighted in the WantedDesign programming as it is an urgent and essential matter. Protecting the environment, achieving reasonable consumption, and reducing waste are all issues that designers face on their daily tasks to create our homes and our work spaces, in addition to bringing beauty to healthier living.
Facing climate change, evaluating the impact we have on our planet and on civilization itself, falls now more than ever under the scope of responsibilities of all designers and creatives at large. As event organizers, we have the opportunity to have a voice; these are issues that we want to address specifically and that we implement in the way we build the show itself in encouraging our exhibitors to embrace a zero-waste approach when producing their installation. Last year we were able to reduce our waste by 50 percent, and in 2019 our policy is the first item in the contract we send to our exhibitors.
The 2019 edition will challenge design professionals with original exhibits and showcases in order to forge their inspiration when drawing our future. Both destinations, Manhattan and Brooklyn, will include numerous educational (and fun) activities such as workshops, demos, and talks for the visitors and participants to connect, share, learn, and discover what should come next.
ID: What can student designers attending WantedDesign this year expect to gain from the different programming of the Brooklyn and Manhattan editions?
OH and CP: WantedDesign Brooklyn will have the Factory Floor dedicated to the Schools exhibit, with 30 schools coming from all over the world (France, China, Mexico, El Salvador, England, the United States, etc.). Now this show is becoming a not-to-be-missed destination to discover young talent. For the students, it’s a stepping stone to build up their professional network, which we know is essential.
Students will benefit directly from our ever-growing number of visitors, including design professionals and manufacturers. This year, for the first time, we have organized a jury to award the best design-student projects. It’s a way to highlight and support them even more. The jury will be led by Avinash Rajagopal, editor in chief of Metropolis, and includes Ayse Birsel, co-founder of Birsel + Seck; Andrea Lipps, assistant curator of contemporary design at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; and Jonsara Ruth, co-founder and design director of Healthy Materials Lab at Parsons School of Design.
Five Awards will be given to the following: Best Original Concept and Design, Best Sustainable Solution, Best Project with Social Impact, Best Ready-to-be-Implemented-or-Produced (Project or Product), and Best Conscious Design Project (that unites three of the four previous criteria). Those five students will benefit from special promotion, and this review is a chance to show their project to professionals who can help with constructive criticism and a real eye for design.
We are also hosting various activities and programming that will be learning experiences for the students. For schools, we are really building opportunities of exchange and partnerships, which is essential.
Lastly, we are partnering again with AIGANY to host the 3rd Spring Wanted Job Fair. It’s a “speed dating” format, not portfolio review, offering a chance for young designers to meet with creative firms.
ID: What can members of the trade attending WantedDesign this year expect to gain from the different programming of the Brooklyn and Manhattan editions?
OH and CP: In Manhattan, we always have a great presence of group exhibits from all over the world. This is really a unique feature of our show. This is how we share original design, new ideas, new material, new potential collaborations. Visitors will meet with Polish, Egyptian—for the first time in the U.S., and it’s a large group of 13 designers—Canadian, Mexican, and Colombian designers.
It’s also the second year of Look Book, a program dedicated to the promotion of the best high-end designers and makers in North America. This section of the show targets interior designers and architects who are looking for talented designers/makers with unique know-how to create bespoke pieces.
In the Launch Pad program, visitors will discover a large selection of 33 international designers, in two categories, furniture and lighting, who have a product ready to be launched in the U.S. market and are looking for the right partner to do it.
Wanted Interiors will explore the Future of Water/Bathroom 2025, a research project resulting from a collaboration between a team from Pratt Accelerator and the American Standard creative team, which is sponsoring this program. It involves how to change behaviors when using water, new scenarios and new ways to build bathroom for a sustainable urban living.
Last but not least, our talk series presented by DesignMilk and Clever is also a great focus for people who want to use WantedDesign as a resource and networking platform.
A funny thing happened shortly after Signe Terenziani founded annual Danish design event 3DaysofDesign in 2014: Everyone wanted to join in, Danish or not. As seen at this year’s event, which ran May 23-25 in Copenhagen, there was a clever workaround: Coinciding exhibitions and installations—many of them held at embassies. From a house that fits together like a puzzle at the Swiss embassy to swamp foliage filling the prim and stately interior of the Institut Français to a concept store virtually overcome with grass, here are 12 of our favorite installations seen at this year’s event.
Interlocking plastic components ingeniously formed the Puzzle House by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels of Bjarke Ingels Group and Swiss architect Simon Frommenwiler of HHF Architects, presented at Copenhagen’s waterfront Embassy of Switzerland; they can be broken down into seating elements and partitions offering wind protection.
In sharp contrast to the stately ambience of the Institut Français, swamp grass surrounded newly reissued pieces by iconic French designers from Gubi. A chandelier hung over the C-Chair dining chair, nestled in pampas grass dried to a honey hue. It was designed by Marcel Gascoin in 1947 and is now available in walnut or oak.
The legless Pacha lounge chair—introduced by Pierre Paulin in 1975 as a low but elegant way of seating—was also presented at the Institut Français. A pampas grass installation was dyed to match the blue upholstery from French fabric house Pierre Frey.
At the residence of the Finnish Ambassador to Denmark, Petite 4630 lamps from Finnish brand Secto Design sprouted from a bed of moss, as part of an exhibition featuring Finnish design and lifestyle brands.
At the Embassy of Slovenia, the exhibit “Narava” celebrated young design talents from the central European country. The Miss Petticoat lamp collection from design studio LesnaVesna has playful dual-structured shades in walnut, birch, or plywood designed to resemble the retro fashion item.
At Nomad Workspace, a co-working space in the former Nørrebro Courthouse, 30 designers took over the ground floor as part of “DAWN x Nomad Workspace,” an exhibit curated by Natalia Sanchez. The Cherry on Top is a collection of mouth-blown glass objects by Helle Mardahl.
Verdant green grass grew throughout concept store Louise Roe Gallery, as part of the installation “A Walk in the Park.”
“A Walk in the Park” also marked the launch of new materials for the Balloon 04 vase by Louise Roe—among them sky-blue-glazed ceramic.
What does a tree smell like? For the instillation “The Scent of Dinesen,” wood plank manufacturer Dinesen dove deep on this topic, collaborating with Norwegian artist and scent researcher Sissel Tolaas to create an archive of recorded smell molecules. Despite attracting those keen to purchase, the resulting collection of scents—surprisingly diverse and complex—are not for sale.
The Kinfolk Gallery served as backdrop for the launch of new lifestyle brand Karimoku Case Study, with products presented as a well-appointed apartment. The brainchild of Japanese wood furniture manufacturer Karimoku in collaboration with architecture and design studios Norm Architects and Keiji Ashizawa Design, Karimoku Case Study features products inspired by the temples, shrines, and gardens of Japan. The Case Study Kinuta N-CT01 low table by Norm Architects draws its form from Japanese facades and doors.
Mia Lagerman, a designer who has lived much of her life straddling the two countries of Sweden and Denmark, was the focus of an exhibit at the Embassy of Sweden. Lagerman’s Sky Wood is a lightweight, stackable chair in molded FSC-certified oak.
Hay took over two stories of the historic Lindencrone Palais villa to examine the future of live and work spaces. This vignette features the Bernard chair by Shane Schneck—launched last month—paired with the Fifty-Fifty floor lamp by Sam Weller and the Slit table.
A dining/communal work space area at the Hay installation was furnished with the Result chair by Friso Kramer and Wim Rietveld, a melamine Fleck bowl, and a Pyramid table and bench in matte-lacquered oak.
A giant version of the iconic Ball Chair by Finnish designer Eero Aarnio was clearly winning the prize for most popular photo op at Odd Fellows Mansion, the location of “Framing,” an exhibit presented by PR firm Samira Kudsk in collaboration with industry brands and experts.
At the Hotel Charlottenborg in the historic Charlottenborg Festsal building, 16 brands were featured in an exhibit curated by Ark Journalfocusing on the hospitality market. The Frama|Ole Palsby collection by Ole Palsby Design in collaboration with Frama consists of cutlery produced in Japan with a matt surface achieved by high-pressure polishing.
With more than 500 exhibitors from around the globe, NeoCon 2019(June 10-12) at Chicago’s theMART will present the newest and most innovative products and concepts in the commercial interior design industry, along with educational seminars and exciting events. Here are our picks for 10 things not to miss this year.
1. HiP Awards: Interior Design’s 6th annual HiP Awards ceremony, honoring industry people and innovative products, will take place Sunday, June 9 at 4:30pm at Marshall’s Landing in theMART—with a party to follow. Purchase tickets here.
2. The NeoCon Plaza: This outdoor space inspired by the idea of “The Urban Boardwalk” will debut this year at NeoCon as a new amenity for exhibitors and attendees. Spanning the length of the MART’s South Drive, NeoCon Plaza it’s designed as a collaborative gathering spot offering views of the Chicago River, Riverwalk and the city’s skyline. It will also be the site of product introductions and programming throughout NeoCon.
3. Material Bank Pop-up: Experience the design library of the future within this debut pop-up Material Bank showcase on the 1st floor of theMART. Suite 103.
4. Daily Keynotes: Gain insight into the ever-changing world of design at three keynotes in the NeoCon Theater: “The Familiar and Unusual: An Investigation of Balance and Experience in Design” by Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, founders of New York-based Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors (June 10 at 8:00am); “Stuff Matters: The Material World We Make” by Ilse Crawford, creative director and founder of London-based Studioilse (June 11 at 8:00am); and “Do No Harm: The Role of Design in Complicated Times” by Liz Ogbu, founder and principal of New York-based Studio O (June 12 at 11:00am).
5. Living Products Showcase: Tickets ($10, register here) are still available for this Tour of NeoCon’s Healthy and Sustainable Products designed to meet the Living Product Challenge. It will be led by a guide from the International Living Future Institute from 2:30pm-4:00pm on June 11.
6. ID Live: Join Interior Design Editor in Chief Cindy Allen as she chats with designers during two sessions of ID Live on the Grand Staricase at theMART. At 1:00pm on June 10, Cindy will be joined by Heather Bush from Carnegie, Erwan Bouroullec from Skyline Design, and Patricia Urquiola from Haworth; at 1:30 her guests will be Don Chadwick from Humanscale, Ed Barber ad Jay Osgerby from Vitra, and Alain Gilles from BuzziSpace; and at 2:00pm, she will chat with Martin Lesjak and Asastaia Su from Mohawk Group, Guilherme Wentz from Sossego, Aliki van der Krujis from Wolf-Gordon, and Sebastian Salvado and Rios Clemente Hale from Janus et Cie. At 1:30pm on June 11, ID Live will feature Mary Holt and Chase Taylor from Carnegie, Nina Etnier and Brad Sherman of Float Studio for Tarkett, David Allan Pesso of JSI, Todd Heiser of Gensler and Byron Morton of theMART; at 2:00pm, Cindy’s guest will be Jessica Ahlerhing and Casey Keasler of Hightower along with several other designers.
7. The 7thFloor Exhibit Hall: Visit to see new-to-NeoCon exhibitors that include Pedrali from Italy, Cascando from the Netherlands, and Luxxbox from Australia.
8. Interactive Activations: There will be plenty of installations and experiences to enjoy on every floor of theMART—from Herman Miller’s “All Together Now” (Floor 1, South Lobby) to Snowsound Quiet Zones (Floor 7, Pass-Through).
9. A Strong Hospitality Focus: In addition to two keynotes by executives from Roman & Williams and Studioilse—known for stellar hospitality projects around the globe—NeoCon 2019 will feature more than 300 exhibitors showing hospitality-minded products, among them Andreu World, Sossego Design, Arper, Bentley, and Sunbrella Contract.
10. SANDOW Innovation Lab: Stop by the first-ever SANDOW Innovation Lab to experience several compelling, industry-leading events in this multiuse space: lectures, roundtables, and product demonstrations.