Best of NeoCon 2017 – Part 1 – Best of Competition and Furniture for Conference and Office
It’s one week post-NeoCon, and so we present an iteration of Contract magazine’s Best of NeoCon 2017 competition of contract furnishings products. The esteemed awards competition recognized 89 products by 59 companies in 44 categories; that’s one more award than last year’s count!
The honors included 39 Gold Awards, 42 Silver Awards, 10 Innovation Awards, and five Editors’ Choice Awards for a total of 97 awards including Best of Competition. Our officeinsight team did its very best to find and see each winning product in person during the show; in case you missed a few, or didn’t attend, peruse at your pleasure!
HALCON won Best of Competition with Halo, Gold Award winner in the Conference Room Furniture category and also Gold Award winner in Height-Adjustable Tables.
HNI Corp. subsidiaries won seven awards. Gunlocke received Gold for Calm Lounge Collection, Tia Barstools, and Tia Guest seating, plus Editors’ Choice for Calia. HBF won Silver for Simple Writing Desk and Editors’ Choice for Harmoni Table by Space Copenhagen. HBF Textiles won Silver for Raw Materials Collection.
Davis Furniture was also a big winner this year with three Gold Awards (for Hans, Weda, and Reed), one Silver (for Nora), and one Innovation Award (for Q6).
Steelcase and subsidiary Designtex together received five awards. Surround by Steelcase Health won Gold; Verb® Active Media Table by Steelcase Education won Silver; Biophilia Collection by Designtex won Gold, and Casper Cloaking Technology by Designtex won both Silver and Innovation Awards.
Andreu World won four awards – Gold for Radial High Table and Capri Lounge, and Silver for Smart Barstool and Lake.
Inscape and West Elm Workspace with Inscape together won four awards. Inscape’s Arrivals Bench won Gold, and West Elm Workspace with Inscape received both Gold and Silver for Conduit by Gensler, plus Gold for Linear Wood LED Lighting.
Mohawk Group won three Gold Awards – for the Lichen Collection, Lineate, and Visual Interactive Studio.
KI and Pallas Textiles together won three Gold Awards, for KI’s Ruckus Collection and Universal Height-Adjustable Screen and Pallas Textiles’ Loft Collection.
Skyline Design also received three awards – two Golds and one Editors’ Choice – all for the same product, Transcend™ by Suzanne Tick.
Teknion won Gold for Altos Landscape, plus two Silvers – for Expansion City Line and enhancements to Zones, which was Best of Competition winner last year.
OFS won three Silver Awards, for Heya, Wyre, and Hug.
Companies winning two awards each included Bentley, Bernhardt Design, Bolyu, Carnegie, Herman Miller, Snowsound, and Vitra.
BEST OF COMPETITION WINNER
HALO is a collection of tables, benches and storage components for formal meeting spaces. At the heart of the collection is the Halo table with the “Halo edge.”
“Tables are encircled by the Halo edge, providing vital connectivity and protection with impact-resistance; any chair striking the table edge is defended from damage by HALO’s perimeter profile, and table surfaces are equally protected, remaining pure in material and form with power and data cleanly integrated into the HALO edge.”
Modern sideboard storage and bench seating options complement the HALO tables and can be configured to meet any need.
In the storage components, thoughtful modules accommodate everything from refrigeration and waste bins to cutlery, glassware and dishware, including magnetized pieces to accommodate different sized dishes, and even a record player with speaker system (during our visit to the showroom, HALCON was spinning Kind of Blue by Miles Davis – swoon).
The fully configurable system provides a complete range of components available in multiple heights, widths and depths; these mix-and-match pieces bring charm, exclusivity and comfort to a collection that will cater to designers and clients who want something that feels luxurious, professional, relaxing and welcoming all at once.
The metal finishes for finger pulls and bases for the Halo table, credenza and bench are on point with color and finish trends; designers may choose from polished chrome, brushed satin aluminum, brushed brass, light bronze, deep bronze and black anodize.
And Halo bench seating is available in two seat depths, an optional back, and a range of sizes for conference room gallery seating and informal public spaces. www.halconfurniture.com
Award Winners, by Category
Furniture for Conference and Office
-GOLD: Andavi by Tuohy Furniture Corp.: Andavi is a matrix wall of modular storage components that defines spaces for open plan and private areas. It discretely uses an adjustable post and cabinet format to control the relative degree of privacy or openness desired, while offering ergonomic, acoustical, power/data and materiality benefits. It serves as office desking, storage, space divider, collaboration and backdrop, all within a population of interchangeable components. www.tuohyfurniture.com
-SILVER: Cern Collection by Nienkamper: The Cern Collection is designed to embody the warm-modern sensibility of today’s working environment. Its table range includes modular tables and desks, bench desks and height adjustable options. Storage solutions include credenzas and bookcases either freestanding or completely integrated with tables and that can be used as room dividers to create separate work zones. A wide range of mixed materials and finish options contrast and complement each other. www.nienkamper.com
>Conference Room Furniture
-GOLD: Halo by HALCON: See Best of Competition winner, above.
-SILVER: Gait by Decca/Elan: Gait by Erin Ruby is a collection of elegant tables and credenzas featuring delicate leg modules that evoke midstride movement. They are finely crafted in veneer or lacquer, with optional glass or solid surface tops, metal legs and edge detail in satin stainless steel, mirror black PVD coated stainless steel, blackened steel or powder coating. An innovative cap-and-sleeve structure allows leveling at the top of the leg. http://deccacontract.com
-GOLD: Ruckus Collection by KI: The Ruckus Collection is a seating collection based on a seat and back arrangement that permits users to sit and be supported in a wide variety of ways. It encourages movement while sitting and supports today’s learning space transformations. www.ki.com
-SILVER: Verb® Active Media Table by Steelcase Education: Verb® Active Media Table complements the existing Verb product line with versatile, intuitive and unobstructed technology support for the classroom. Its monitor lift eliminates the need to mount technology to a wall or column, improving sightlines during lectures and enhancing collaboration during group work. The mobile table can support a range of existing technology. www.steelcase.com/discover/information/education
>Files & Mobile Storage Systems
-GOLD: Anchor Raised Storage by Knoll: Anchor Raised Storage is a collection of laminate storage pieces sized and configured to address today’s blend of personal and professional storage needs. The raised, footed base offers a lightweight aesthetic while providing the capability to distribute and manage power below the base. Add-on desktop plug-in module provides the user with quick and easy access to power and data. www.knoll.com
-SILVER: Sidecar by Watson Furniture: Sidecar is a new companion storage line with a compact footprint and thoughtful feature set. Design details include an accent bezel lock face, no-pull drawer face, low profile casters, inset top surface, integrated tow bar and optional USB charging. Drawer hardware is fully concealed with premium soft-close undermount slides, and the inset top provides easy drawer access without requiring a pull. www.watsonfurniture.com
-GOLD: Arrivals Bench by Inscape: Arrivals Bench is a modular spine-based platform that supports a comprehensive range of applications for today’s individual, collaborative and integrated work styles. It delivers convenient access to power, enables personalization and supports wellbeing through height adjustability options and privacy elements. www.inscapesolutions.com
-SILVER: Conduit by Gensler by West Elm Workspace with Inscape: Designed in collaboration with Gensler, Conduit is an office system that provides integrated power distribution and space planning flexibility to create different work zones from individual workstations to meeting tables. From shelves to coat racks to privacy screens, accessories can conveniently be integrated to the system for employee workspace personalization. Conduit also won a Gold Award in the Furniture Systems category. www.westelmworkspace.com
>Furniture Collections for Collaboration
-GOLD: Prospect by Herman Miller: Prospect is a portfolio of semi-circular, freestanding furniture designed to foster individual and team creativity in today’s workplaces and learning environments. Designed for small to medium-sized collaborative teams, it includes whiteboards and tackable surfaces for brainstorming, pinning and visual thinking. www.hermanmiller.com
-SILVER: Heya by OFS Brands: Heya means “small room.” Designer Roger Webb created Heya to form smaller spaces within an environment. For individuals, Heya creates a place for people to escape, think and breathe. For groups, Heya creates a place for people to closely collaborate and connect. Heya’s comfort and visual softness allow these small rooms to blend seamlessly into the office while still providing the closeness and privacy people need to focus. www.ofsbrands.com
-INNOVATION: Q6 by Davis Furniture: Q6 by Jonathan Prestwich has built onto the motivation of the Q5 collection to create an all-inclusive line addressing the need for different kinds of working spaces. The new line includes open seating, screens, powered tables, and ottomans. www.davisfurniture.com
-GOLD: Conduit by Gensler by West Elm Workspace with Inscape: See description in Furniture: Benching, above.
-SILVER: Expansion City Line by Teknion: Expansion Cityline is based on the concept of planning for a workplace as diverse and dynamic as a modern city. With a special beam framework and robust accessories program, the system creates workstations, collaborative spaces and mixed-use areas in which people can feel comfortable and empowered as they pursue individual and collective goals. It offers a highly active setting that allows people to move, to gather, and to disperse when privacy and focus is desired. www.teknion.com
>Lounge Furniture Collections
-GOLD: Calm Lounge Collection by Gunlocke: The Calm Lounge Collection is light scaled, featuring clean, modern lines with a distinct and deliberate residential feel for commercial environments. The Calm modular lounge combines the best of comfort, style and convenience. www.gunlocke.com
-SILVER: Nora by Davis Furniture: Nora is a contemporary collection that blurs the lines between contract and residential design. This lounge, bench and table series blends the comforts of home with commercial durability and versatility while its elegant design opens the door to a range of material and finish options. www.davisfurniture.com
-EDITORS’ CHOICE: Terry Crews Collection by Bernhardt Design: The Terry Crews Collection features five lounge products: Ibis sofa, Lilypad + Lily Chair, Aire benches and Float tables. While each piece serves as a stand-alone accent, when arranged as a collective group, the broad palette of materials, finishes and function create a unified visual statement. Mr. Crews, who studied design before joining the NFL and later becoming an actor, chose ancient Egypt as inspiration for the collection. www.bernhardtdesign.com
>Tables: Communal & Task
-GOLD: Radial High Table by Andreu World: The Radial High Table collection was developed from an elaborate and synthetic geometry, characterized by its modularity, aesthetic versatility and technology for creative working spaces in a bar seating setting. Depending on its use, it integrates or divides the space. All of the versions feature an integrated cable management system, invisibly providing power and access to internal or external networks, audio, video or data. www.andreuworld.com
-SILVER: MN201 by Howe: An all-wood meeting table, MN201 is part of Howe’s Essential Workspace line by Morten Nikolajsen for open office and meeting environments. The wood brings both a warmth and an interior-designed feeling to office spaces, and the material also responds to the trend in fusing office and home. The table’s simple construction allows it to be extended to meet the needs of larger gatherings, and for the tabletop to be as long as required. www.howe.com/us
-EDITORS’ CHOICE: Harmoni Table by Space Copenhagen by HBF: The Harmoni Table was made by SPACE, a Copenhagen-based design practice that dedicates itself to emotional and poetic architectural pieces, keeping with a strong personal vision and avoiding the mundane. Fusing a classic, solid wood structure with a modern, rounded design, Harmoni highlights the elements of craftsmanship and artistic vision by focusing on the organic materials and physicality of the table itself. It is intended to last for generations and through many inherited hands. www.hbf.com
-GOLD: Halo by HALCON: See Best of Competition winner, above.
-SILVER: Citterio Desking System (CDS) by Vitra: The modular office table system CDS by Antonio Citterio caters to the requirements of highly varying tasks – from creative processes and intensive team projects to administrative tasks and concentrated individual work. It can be configured as individual tables, clusters of multiple workstations, spacious workbenches or meeting tables in various sizes. All are available either at a fixed height or as manual or motor-operated sit-stand solutions. Easily accessible power options, cable baskets and cable guides keep work areas tidy, while privacy is ensured by screens and cleverly designed roller blinds. www.vitra.com
-INNOVATION: Citterio Desking System (CDS) by Vitra: See above.
-GOLD: Hans by Davis Furniture: Hans by Studio Taschide is an “anywhere and everywhere” piece suitable for any space: as a small occasional table, a seat or a place to drop off odds and ends. It is constructed of solid wood. www.davisfurniture.com
-SILVER: Wyre by OFS Brands: Wyre was designed with minimalist sensibility to capture an intriguing form without losing utility. Details include subtly lipped surfaces meant to draw the eyes and soften what could be hard shapes with a feeling of craft. Options for tone and texture with veneer or solid surfaces bring a sense of home and warmth to this accent piece. www.ofsbrands.com
>Tables: Training & Work
-SILVER: Simple Writing Desk by HBF: Simple Writing Desk and Essens seating series of chairs and stools, created in partnership with Copenhagen-based OEO Studio, were designed to be both timeless and modern. Built with a high attention to detail and focus on craftsmanship, they are meant to last for generations as heirloom furniture pieces that age with grace and become more beautiful with time. The Simple Writing Desk carries connections to many parts of the world including American Modern and Danish Modern – with references to Japan. www.hbf.com