The 35th annual NeoCon World's Trade Fair takes place June 16 to 18, 2003, at The Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL. Since 1969, NeoCon has brought commercial and residential furnishings manufacturers and design professionals together for knowledge-sharing, vision-casting and overall inspiration. NeoCon started with a solid core and slowly built layer upon layer of product seminars, forums, special events and awards to best serve the design community. As a result, NeoCon 2003 has more to offer than ever before, according to Mark Falanga, vice president, commercial furnishings industry, Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. Among the not-be-missed items on the agenda: exciting new product introductions from 1,200 exhibitors; a record number
of educational sessions and workshops, including four keynote speakers; new special events and programs, such as the "Latin Inspirations" series and the GREENlife™ exhibit; award programs, including the much-anticipated Best of NeoCon Awards; and countless networking opportunities.
This year's keynote speakers were selected to cover a variety of topics relevant to the interior design and architecture communities. They include:
* IIDA Keynote Speaker: "Creativity As An Economic Force"
By Dr. Richard Florida
Author of the national bestseller, The Rise of the Creative Class: How it's Transforming Work, Leisure, Community and Everyday Life, Florida will discuss a provocative new way to think about why we live as we do today—and where we might be headed. He will explore how the most profound changes in our workplace, culture and everyday lives stem from the rise of creativity as an economic force.
Sponsored by Allsteel; Monday, June 16, 8 a.m.; Sauganash Ballroom, Holiday Inn Mart Plaza
* "The True Art of Collaboration: Learning from the Theatre"
Kicking off day two of NeoCon, Metropolis magazine presents "The True Art of Collaboration: Learning from the Theatre." This lively discussion moderated by Metropolis editor-in-chief, Susan S. Szenasy, will explore one of the most successful models of creative collaboration: the theatre. Panelists include: Robert Falls, creative director of Chicago's famous Goodman Theatre; Linda Buchanan, stage designer; Virgil Johnson, costume designer; and Michael Philippi, lighting designer.
Tuesday, June 17, 8 a.m.; Sauganash Ballroom, Holiday Inn Mart Plaza
* "Be Yourself in Interior Design"
By Orlando Diaz-Azcuy
Cuban-born Orlando Diaz-Azcuy is one of America's most celebrated and awarded designers. An architect, landscape architect, interior designer, product designer and educator, he is renowned for his elegant, disciplined and innovative work. Diaz-Azcuy will share his insight and experience on how to be the best in the business, and why it's important to stand by your principles and ideas, not just for the purpose of being unique, but in order to be a valuable contributor to the evolution of design.
Tuesday, June 17, 1 p.m.; Merchandise Mart Conference Center
* "Total Design" By Clodagh
Internationally renowned, Irish-born designer Clodagh creates environments as "art to live in." Earning some of the industry's most coveted awards as one of the "World's 100 Leading Interior Designers" by Architectural Digest, Clodagh trademarks her projects with an inventive and sensitive use of materials. As one of the world's most innovative designers, she has gone from starting a fashion company at 17 to the opening of Clodagh Design International, which has completed work on many notable corporate, residential and retail projects. Clodagh will discuss how design and life should involve all of the senses and elements, and will expound on the concept of "Total Design."
Wednesday, June 18, 8 a.m.; Merchandise Mart Conference Center
* Student Day Keynote: "Danger and Pleasure"
By Lindy Roy, Principal, ROY
One of today's hottest new designers, Lindy Roy of New York City's ROY, will give a behind-the-scenes look at several of her projects, from Vitra's new Manhattan showroom to a hotel and spa in the Okavango Delta in Botswana, Africa. Her work has received rave reviews from The New York Times and Architectural Record magazine, and has recently been featured in the "New Hotels for Global Nomads" exhibition at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Wednesday, June 19, 9 a.m.; Holiday Inn Mart Plaza
In addition to the keynote presentations or any of the 120 CEU-accredited seminars and industry association forums, most people make the journey to the NeoCon World's Trade Fair for one thing: to discover the latest and best new products—the products that will find their way into an array of commercial applications in the next few years. Featured on these pages are just a few of the hundreds of new products that will make their debut during NeoCon. Because the fair is actually five shows under one umbrella, visitors have a multitude of expo venues from which to choose to conduct their search to find them:
*The Buildings Show®, which presents the latest commercial building products for the workplace, including innovations
in commercial facilities, management, planning, design,
construction, renovation and operations.
* Office Expo by OFDA, providing dealers with information on the latest design trends, products, companies and education that they need to sell products to their customers.
* TechnoCon™, a showcase of the latest items to keep up-to-date in the wireless fields.
* NEW Hospitality, featuring furniture and accessories for all types of hospitality environments, including restaurants, hotels, motels, resorts, clubs, hospitals, medical centers, assisted-living facilities and senior housing.
* Fine Design Residential Furnishings Show™, highlighting luxurious designs for residential furnishings.
For more information about the NeoCon World's Trade Fair 2003, visit www.merchandisemart.com, or call (800) 677-6278.