Knak Group Goes to NeoCon 2022
Two days of NeoCon are complete. Chicago weather has been wild (tornado warnings and 100 degree heat). The crowds have been huge at North America’s largest design exposition and conference for commercial interiors. There has been a palpable exuberance as everyone returned to The Merchandise Mart after almost a two year hiatus. The Knak Group met with many old friends, made some new ones, and had the privilege of winning a special award ourselves. We also threw a fabulous birthday party at Sidetracks for David Meckley. (We Vogued!) What follows is a rundown of everything we were able to capture from NeoCon 2022!
Let’s start at the end of the story. If you’ve been to The Mart, you know the epic scale of it all. If you’ve never been, wearing comfortable shoes is key to seeing everything- this was the largest building in the world when it opened in 1930. Three of our manufacturers were present in The Mart (and two were offsite and therefore ineligible for a Best of Award). Halcon, Muraflex, and Mayer Fabric each had innovative, awe-inspiring products as finalists in the Best Of NeoCon Awards. Here are the winners.
Halcon Helm Wins Best of Competition
The single most prestigious award given at NeoCon is the Best of Competition. All of the judges who hand out hundreds of awards need to all agree on one, single, solitary introduction that embodies the very best of innovation and design among all of the entrants. This year, for an unprecedented third time in a decade, Halcon once again received this single, top award for their stunning Helm adjustable table. Designed with jehs+laub, Helm is sleekly integrated with technology and unexpectedly equipped with an adjustable-height surface. Helm exudes and respects a classic, timeless mid century design but enables it with technology to adapt to a changing workplace. A powerful statement as a desk or board room table, it also won two additional Gold Awards at NeoCon - for Adjustability and Conferencing.
Muraflex Zitto Wins Sustainability Award
The architects and interior designers that Knak Group has the privilege of working with are unwavering in their insistence for sustainable products. The Neocon judges singled out the Muraflex Zitto privacy pod for a level of sustainability unparalleled in the industry. This product comes in the Uno or the Due, a freestanding single or dual pod encapsulating you with a quiet, deep-focus private space whether you’re looking for productive closed meetings, a quick phone call, or a last-minute brainstorming session. But what does sustainability even mean with the Zitto?
The insulation is made of recycled denim
The combined electric components for electrical and ventilation in the pods are all energy saving equating in energy consumption to one lightbulb
The glass and aluminum are 100% recyclable
The glass walls let natural light in.
It uses elements such as the door from other product lines optimizing the product lifecycle
The materials used in the pod are eco friendly. The textiles are made of biodegradable materials.
Our products our designed with the well-being and mental health of its occupants in mind, and we include an ADA solution.
Double glazing for superior acoustics- we are the only dual glaze standard product offering.
Wilkhahn Yonda Chairs Wins a RedDot Award
The name says it all - Yonda is derived from "Beyond," because Wilkhahn sees this new chair range as "beyond.” This chair is truly groundbreaking in its approach to sustainability, comfort, and design. Since Wilkhahn is not in The Mart, they enjoy awards from other prestigious competitions. This year, the Yonda chair won a Red Dot product design award!
To see more about the Yonda chair, scroll down to our Knak Knews May segment.
We encourage you to watch the replay of the livestream below from their Chicago showroom at Tree Studios to get an inside look as to why this chair is so impressive.
Knak Groups wins the Halcon Covid Crusher Award
Possibly the biggest surprise for Knak Group was learning we won the Halcon Covid Crusher Award. We wish it had something to do with eradicating a virus, but we are humbled it actually had to do with how successful we were in bringing Halcon products to some of the most important commercial interior projects in the Northern California region over the last year.
Happy Birthday, David
This year marks the 20th anniversary of David throwing his birthday party while at NeoCon. It was especially poignant being at Sidetracks in Chicago since this is where he really came of age when it was one room with a video screen over the front door. Now, it's a multilevel, multiroom club, bar, and lounge. David isn’t the only thing that has come a long way! Friends new and old gathered for this festival and hilarious love fest Sunday evening. We all owe a great deal to David for what he has done for our industry. We are grateful to everyone who made an appearance to raise a toast, have a dance, and wear a face mask from the David of Years Past collection.
Replay the Live Streams
In case you didn’t know, we were live streaming directly from NeoCon. If you follow Mike’s LinkedIn account, you were getting alerts each time we went live. It was an incredible way to get up close and personal with the products we love and the people who bring them to us. Major kudos to Mike Varljen who gave us a tour at Mayer Fabrics and Alistair Simpson who gave a tour of the latest Wilkhahn products from their beautiful showroom at Tree Studios in River North.
In addition to products, while at the Sandow ThinkLab Sustainability Lab, Mike had an opportunity to share some important details on sustainability being tackled by the non-profit Philanthropy by Design (www.pbd.org).
Wilkhahn Yonda Chair
Knak is excited to introduce the new Wilkhahn Yonda chair -
Beyond the ordinary!
To appreciate the all-new Yonda chair, you have to know its name is inspired by “beyond.”
Neunzig°design studio's innovative office chair really does go that extra mile. The Yonda family of comfortable chairs comes with a large host of design options to meet the needs of both residential homes and office workplaces. The seat cushioning also boasts a distinctive Y-shaped depression, a reference to the first letter of its name.
The sculptural-looking armrests curve downward at the front. The biocomposite seat shell of this office chair creates a lightweight appearance. But it doesn’t stop there. Its design, materials, and also surface finishes reflect a circular economy contemporary concept.
Custom upholstery is optional, if you opt-out of it you will still have one of the most comfortable office chairs on the market. Furthermore, add a felt pad, seat cushioning, or padding on the inside, and you will surely be further impressed.
In addition to six colors and four upholstery options for the seat shell, Yonda offers four frame variants making the chair an extremely versatile furniture choice. The choice ranges from an appealing four-leg frame made of solid wood, or upi can choose the robust tubular steel option. For extra dynamic comfort, choose the optional 3D rocking capability. Yonda is ideal for dining rooms, cafeterias, meeting rooms, home offices, or even as a nice upholstered, bench-type workspace.
Intrigued? Visit our Yonda Chair page by selecting Learn More!