October 4, 2021
28 Products We Love at NeoCon
Office to Go
Mobility has never been more important—for safe social distancing, to support collaborative work on demand, and to accommodate diverse work styles. People not only need to get around the office, but to do so quickly. To that end, companies are launching presentation equipment, desks, seating, and entire workstations on wheels. Individual workers are increasingly on the move, and now their workspaces can be too.
Capsule of Calm
More than one study suggests that people find rounded decor soothing. Unlike boxy and jagged shapes, gentle curves stimulate the brain, according to neuroscientists in separate studies by the Zanvyl Krieger Mind/Brain Institute at Johns Hopkins University and the University of Toronto at Scarborough. No wonder, then, that roundness is a notable feature of many furnishings that manufacturers are rolling out to welcome post-pandemic office users.
Autodromo by Decca Contract deccacontract.com, 333 COURTESY DECCA CONTRACT Adapt by Hightower hightoweraccess.com, 1110 COURTESY HIGHTOWER Deconstructed Form by Patcraft patcraft.com, 10-160 COURTESY PATCRAFT Embra by Interwoven interwovenhealth.com COURTESY INTERWOVEN Eklund by National nationalofficefurniture.com COURTESY NATIONAL Dela by Stylex stylexseating.com, 337 COURTESY STYLEX SEATING Tempo by Loftwall loftwall.com, 1123A COURTESY LOFTWALLL TOOaPICNIC by Arcadia Contract arcadiacontract.com
Soft-focus hues distinguish a number of debuts at this year’s NeoCon, ranging from flooring to lighting and upholstery. Less saturated color is welcoming but it also signals earnest intent: These products are highly sustainable. Call it a reflection of the new sobriety of a post-shutdown world.
Coil by LightArt lightart.com, 10-142 COURTESY LIGHTART Mixu by Arper arper.com, 346 COURTESY ARPER Outdoor In by Luum Textiles luumtextiles.com, 1043 COURTESY LUUM Shadow Play by Knoll Textiles knoll.com/sho COURTESY KNOLL TEXTILE Legato Liquid Linoleum by Mannington Commercial manningtoncommercial.com, 1039 COURTESY MANNINGTON
We may be wired to seek right angles. A 2012 study by Massachusetts General Hospital found that the brain’s mental circuitry is organized in a precise gridlike pattern of fibers—like handwoven fabric or the urban plan of Manhattan. A number of new products subtly commandeer this reassuring arrangement of right angles for carpeting, upholstery, and conference tables. Perhaps office workers know a gray-matter love letter when they see it.
Touch Collection by Arc-Com arc-com.com, 1194 COURTESY ARC-COM Connect Table by Gensler for Andreu World andreuworld.com, 10-132 COURTESY ANDREU WORLD Rising Signs by Interface interface.com, 10-134 COURTESY INTERFACE Metronome Trestle by Nienkämper nienkamper.com, 365 COURTESY NEINKAMPER
Orderly geometry in textiles can lend more than elegance—it can add an emotional layer to the experience of space. The three-dimensional weaves of the Aleksandra Gaca Collection for Momentum Textiles are a prime example. The new line of contract upholstery—the first by the Dutch designer for the American contract market—features quilted, pillowy surfaces designed to add soft, soothing texture to the hard profiles of office seating.
Sight lines—the imaginary lines connecting a viewer’s eyes to points throughout a space—are a device of thoughtful interiors. Uninterrupted lines can enable views of the outside; blocking them is a way of providing privacy. So what does it mean that we’re encountering products with lines that are faint, fading, dissolved, or shifting to form a new vision? It might be due to today’s blurring cultural boundaries, a sign of our uncertain times.
Obscura by Skyline Design skydesign.com, 1040 COURTESY SKYLINE Flek Pure by 3form 3-form.com, 10-142 COURTESY 3FORM Scanlines by Turf turf.design COURTESY TURF Collective Collection by Shaw Contract shawcontract.com, 1014 COURTESY SHAW CONTRACT Cryptology Collection by Design Pool designpoolpatterns.com, 7-4049 COURTESY DESIGN POOL
In line with new team-style office setups, easy assembly is king. Radically portable and easily reconfigured collections are proliferating at a fast clip, now that the new normal of user-led, improvised meetings and collaborative work has created the need for versatile furnishings workers can arrange themselves.
Hex by OFS ofs.com, 1132 COURTESY OFS Loupe Collection by Encore Seating encoreseating.com, 336 COURTESY ENCORE SEATING Path by Humanscale humanscale.com Routes by Teknion teknion.com, 1048 COURTESY TEKNION
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