What’s new, what’s next? This program packs a season’s worth of programming into one day
It wouldn’t be fall in New York without What’s New, What’s Next, the New York Design Center’s annual showcase of innovative ideas, surprising designs, brand-new materials and innovative products. Complementing the hundreds of exhibition events and collection reveals, this year’s programs – taking place throughout the day on Wednesday 20 September – are not only bigger and better, but more ambitious and diverse. On top of the latest trends, the boards address everything from the evolution of outdoor spaces to the desire for interiors that connect on a spiritual level. Ralph Lauren Home, Fromenthal, House of Hackney, Alexa Hampton, Suzanne Casler, Ariel O’Kane, and Tom Felicia are just a few of the legacy brands and noteworthy speakers on the agenda.
“We create panels, discussions and presentations that provide essential information to designers in a single day,” says Jim Druckman, president and CEO of NYDC. Unlike weeklong events elsewhere that address core business issues, WNWN shines Manhattan’s spotlight on more obscure and interesting topics — “from a national, even international, perspective,” he adds. The goal is to be inspiring rather than useful and fun rather than boring. “We want people to have a good time,” Druckman says.
“I always call it a speed dating market,” says Alex Lerman, chief marketing officer. “There’s so much to see, so much to do, and it’s only one day, so you have to be there.” If your crowded itinerary seems to verge on coordinated chaos, that’s intentional. “We work hand-in-hand with each showroom, and all our partners and designers, to develop programming and scope out themes,” she says. The schedule takes into account everything from the theme to the elevator stops: “If you like modern design, you can easily move from one related showroom to another. If you never want to leave the seventh floor, you can stay there for the whole Today.” While it may be impossible for one person to do it all, the hope, according to Lerman, is that friends and colleagues will bump into each other in the building and exclaim, “Oh my God, what committee did you go to? I just came from this and it was very great“-Communicating through individual and shared experiences.
Fifteen years later, thousands of repeat attendees have proven that the formula fills a need, and the September date serves as a clarion call back to school for adult design professionals: “It’s a jolt of excitement to start the fall season,” says Lerman. What’s new in 2023 are opportunities for what she describes as “Speedy programming,” with questions plucked from the fishbowl for a diverse crew of designers to answer on the spot. Ranging from “What piece do you always keep in the room?” to “What’s the last song you listened to?” a grab bag will be administered. By “big personality” will be revealed in the work.
“They’re not the usual suspects,” Lerman says. “We have 163 presenters this year, as well as 150 design ambassadors.” In response to the pandemic closures, the Center has also developed an online hub where visitors can always find original articles about new galleries and collections as well as an “Ask the Ambassador” column. “It gives 200 Lex and what’s new and what’s next a life beyond the day itself,” says Lerman. Satellite programming with partners such as Home business The Design Leadership Network also demonstrates NYDC’s commitment to strengthening the design community as a whole.
But the main event remains what’s new and what’s next, of course. There’s less than a week to go, so make your plans now. Here are the highlights of today’s itinerary as of press time:
10:00 AM | The Art of Design
Hosted by David Sutherland and Elle Decor
joins el decorSeptember cover star Mark Grattan, executive editor Ingrid Abramovic, and Perennials design director Amy Williams talk about curating stylish, sophisticated spaces. They will address the intersection of fine arts with home furnishings and explore the transformative power of statement pieces that have come to serve an almost sculptural function within the home.
11:15 AM | What does quiet luxury mean in interiors?
Hosted by Di Le Cuna
With expert advice, De Le Cuona skillfully decodes the most exciting trend in design. Frederick Design editor Hudson Moore chairs a discussion between interior designers David Fraser, Roger Higgins and Blair Moore to define the aesthetic as seen in their projects, while US sales director Scott Russell introduces the brand’s new range of low-key and high-end classics that suit the style.
11:45 AM | The Practical Magic of Craftsmanship: Create detailed work with artists and craftsmen
Sponsored by Fromenthal | Collier Web
Created by Sabine Rothman and Victoria Murray of Interiors Academy, this engaging series of quick presentations features the custom craftsmanship of designers and makers such as Tim Butcher, Daniel Collier, Joan Craig, Nina Farmer, Joy Mueller, and Katherine Polley.
12:00 noon | Design with Impact: Live through Design Gallery designers’ creation of their virtual dream home
Hosted by Balicek
Design Leadership Network’s Hadley Keller catches up with the trending influencers behind Embello’s flagship virtual showroom, Living by Design. Talented tech visionaries Dabito, Ariel O’Kane, and Will Taylor consider creating a dream space — digitally — and consider what the showroom’s success says about the future of the brick-and-mortar model.
12:15 PM | Design work
Hosted by Leftbank Art
As interest in reality design software – and its platforms – continues to grow, it is essential to take a strategic approach to expansion and self-promotion. Interior designers and HGTV stars Justin Q. Williams and Michelle Smith Boyd talk the ins and outs of business, branding, and licensing in this conversation moderated by Beth Diana Smith of Beth Diana Smith Interior Design.
1:00 PM | Explore creative collaboration
Hosted by Amonal
Adam Cummins, CEO of Amuneal, moderates this panel of fellow creatives including Elizabeth Polonino, Brad Ford, Rodney Lawrence, Joe Nahm, John Bomb, and Mark de la Vega as they talk about the methods, collaboration, and tools they’ve used to refine their visions and deliver satisfaction. their souls and build their businesses. Representing a dynamic sector of designers, artists and entrepreneurs whose work celebrates not just products and spaces, but the partnerships and people behind them, this conversation will explore the intersection of inspiration, creative direction and the art of design.
1:45 PM | Floor to Ceiling: How to Design with Art in Mind
Hosted by Al-Nasiri
Designing spaces for art collecting clients presents a unique set of challenges: Statement-making paintings and sculptures require equally striking furniture that can hold their own without competing with or distracting from the artwork. From the colorful carpets to the unique lighting, it’s all achieved with balance. exhibition Editorial Director Jill Ciracchi explores how to curate artistic interiors from minimal to maximalist, abstract to pop, in discussion with designers Danielle Colding, Amy Lau, Paolo Moschino, Brian Sawyer, and Philippe Vergelen.
2:30 pm | Around the World in One Hour with Mary MacDonald and Tori Melott
Hosted by Jennifer Manners Modern Rugs
FrederickStyle director Tori Mellott and award-winning designer Mary McDonald describe the influential and inspiring influence of travel on their work and delve into the role it played in inspiring McDonald’s signature interior design aesthetic and premium product designs.
2:45 PM | Creating a home that renews the creative spirit
Hosted by Jeon Ho New York
Take a stroll through New York’s newest “botanical garden,” Jeon Ho New York, where the international designer debuts his new outdoor furniture and Nagomi textile collections. Amid this green oasis, Hadley Keller of the Design Leadership Network will moderate a panel discussion between Ho, Young Hoh, Janice Parker and David Scott on how to create a home that soothes and restores the soul.
3:45 PM | Luxury outdoor living
Hosted by Royal Botania
As homeowners increasingly look to their backyards not only for sanctuary but also for style, outdoor spaces have become a place for year-round living. Advances in performance materials have taken outdoor furniture to new heights of sophistication, sustainability, and comfort, truly expanding the home’s footprint. Supervised by I aspireFrom Paul Hagen This conversation highlights designers blazing trails and setting trends in great outdoor living spaces, including Kammi Reiss and Kristen Rock of Krid Studio, Iris Dankner of ID Creations and Leyden Lewis of Leyden Lewis Design Studio.
3:45 PM | Design is spiritual: creating spaces, objects and experiences that make customers feel whole again
Hosted by Scrum
Spaces that evoke a sense of belonging and invite sensory exploration and emotional expression are what most clients want now – even if they can’t always express it in words. Beyond simply curating beautiful projects, designers, architects and brands have the power to instill peace and promote healing, whether that be through the structure of a room, chosen materials or experiential components. Speakers, including RHG Architecture+Design founder Rachel Grochowski, Skram Furniture founder Jacob Marks and session moderator Tiffany Ravi, CEO of UpSpring, explain how they envision spiritual spaces that make residents feel grounded and secure.
4:30 pm | Learn from top designers why they chose Kips Bay
Hosted by Dennis Miller New York
Under the guidance of celebrated designer Alexa Hampton, superstars Natasha Baradaran, Keisha Franklin, Sergio Mercado, and Rurik Tobin bring their unique perspectives and share their collective wisdom in this insightful discussion that delves into the significance of the legendary showroom event. Discover the secrets, inspiration and creative journeys that make Kips Bay an annual must-attend for design enthusiasts and professionals alike.
5:00 PM | The evolution of outdoor living
Hosted by Brown Jordan
Balcony Editor-in-Chief Steele Marko leads a conversation with Billy Ceglia, Mario Navarro, and Cara Woodhouse about how maximizing outdoor spaces has changed the way we live today.
5:15 pm | Slim Aarons: Style Book signing with authors Kate Bates and Sean Waldron
Hosted by Interlude Home
Kate Bates and Sean Waldron, editors and co-authors Slim Aarons: Styleconduct a Q&A about the iconic photographer’s distinctive vision and remarkable career, followed by a book signing.
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Home page image: Facade of 200 Lexington Street, home of the New York Design Center and the What’s New and What’s Next | Courtesy of the New York Design Center