Interact with the Stars at NeoCon®


Interact with the Stars at NeoCon®

Kendall College of Art and Design, Grand Rapids, MI, will hold its eighth annual "Interact With the Stars" program from June 14 to 17, 2004, during the NeoCon World's Trade Fair, Chicago, IL. The educational lecture program, organized and conducted by noted author and educator Beverly Russell, Ph.D., includes 10 international speakers renowned for their design ingenuity and imagination. Their presentations will focus on their furnishings products and how they are designed and brought into the marketplace. Each class is followed by site visits to showrooms in the Merchandise Mart for hands-on experience of the presenter's actual designs. This year's program will also go further afield for site visits to auditoriums, restaurants and other public spaces. The students will explore how acoustical products contribute to the harmony and comfort of the interior environment.

This year's speakers will include: Jhane Barnes, president, Jhane Barnes Inc.; Lauren Rottet: principal, DMJM/Rottet; Joseph Ricchio: founder, Ricchio Design; Peter Wooding: president, Wooding Design, Ltd.; David Ritch, Mark Saffell, Jane Kobayashi: partners, 5D Studio; Craig Park: president, Craig Park Consulting; Henner Jahns, president and design director, and Reto Eberle, CEO, of dTank, Inc.

" Our students have benefited beyond measure from their exposure to world leaders in the design industry through this annual class," commented Dr. Oliver Evans, president of Kendall. "Last year we were pleased to welcome students from Pratt Institute and look forward to continued interaction with that school by repeating the experience with their students."

" Interact With the Stars," co-sponsored by Interiors & Sources, is a fully accredited undergraduate course open to any interested individual. Classes will be held at the Institute of Design at LaSalle and Kinzie, a few blocks from the Merchandise Mart.

For further information about the NeoCon Class and registration details, contact Kendall at (800) 676-2787 or visit

Design/Build Projects Forecasted to Rise

Design/build projects will continue to grow in popularity, according to A/E/C firm leaders responding to ZweigWhite's 2004 Design/Build Survey of Design & Construction Firms. An overwhelming majority of 80 percent of architecture, engineering, construction and integrated design/build firm leaders report that they are expecting an increase in the use of design/build in the next five years.

Firm leaders surveyed for the new report had much to say about this project delivery method, citing lower costs and a single point of responsibility as its biggest advantages. Not all feedback was positive, however; a higher level of risk was listed as one of design/build's biggest disadvantages.

Is the risk in design/build worth the reward? ZweigWhite associate Laura Rothman, managing editor of the firm's series of benchmarking reports, says it depends on who you ask. "Design/build's biggest proponents, the leaders of design/build firms, say the reward is at least equal to the risk, if not greater. Construction firm leaders tend to agree, while design/consulting firm leaders are more likely to say the risk is too great, and not worth the reward." Rothman adds that despite the possibility of increased risk for design/build projects, no firm leader surveyed expects to see a decrease in the use of design/build over the next five years.

The 2004 Design/Build Survey was published in partnership with the Design-Build Institute of America. For more information, visit

Great Schools by Design

A major national initiative aimed at transforming the way America's public schools are planned and designed is being launched by the American Architectural Foundation (AAF). Great Schools by Design was developed by the AAF in response to the challenges communities face because of the deteriorating condition of public schools and the need to build new schools. More than 55 million Americans, one-fifth of the population, spend their days in elementary and secondary school buildings, many of which are in disrepair. The U.S. spends $20 billion each year to renovate and build urban schools, and the need is rising. New York City alone estimates that at least $15 billion is needed to restore its 1,200 school buildings. In addition to fixing outdated and dilapidated schools, 6,000 new facilities must be built nationwide in the next decade simply to keep pace with population growth.

" The numbers are daunting," said Ronald Bogle, president and CEO of the AAF. "We simply must respond to the challenges this crisis presents. The architecture and design community can play a central role in helping cities address their school facilities needs and, as a result, positively affect the well-being of future generations."

Great Schools by Design has two major goals. The first is to be a resource to school and community leaders and inform them about leading-edge thinking in school design. The second goal is to create a national forum for the major stakeholders in school design to think creatively about the larger issues affecting the design and construction of schools.

With corporate support from McGraw-Hill Construction and Herman Miller, the AAF will engage architects, planners, school board members, superintendents, teachers, students, parents, civic leaders and other stakeholders in active dialogue about this country's school buildings.

Exploring the History of Architectural Drawing

The National Building Museum has unveiled "Envisioning Architecture: Drawings from the Museum of Modern Art, New York," an exhibition exploring architectural drawings produced over the past 100 years—a period in which both the discipline and the medium underwent dramatic transformations. On display through June 20, 2004, it will present an overview of modern architectural drawing, delineating a visual history from the 19th-century Viennese architect Otto Wagner to contemporary deconstructivist Zaha Hadid. The exhibition features 190 works by over 60 international architects including, among others, Frank Lloyd Wright, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Louis I. Kahn, Eero Saarinen, Aldo Rossi, Bernard Tschumi and Rem Koolhaas.

The recent proliferation of digital rendering makes this an opportune moment to reexamine the cursory sketches, detailed drawings and abstract renderings that architects used as both design and presentation tools in the 20th century. The collection combines drawings in traditional media such as pencil, ink or watercolor with those created with less conventional methods such as collage, airbrushing, photography and computer generation. Once seen primarily as documentary support material, architectural drawings are now recognized as autonomous works of art that offer significant insights into the development of architectural ideas.

For more information and exhibit hours, visit

  • Recognizing Environmental Champions
    Interiors & Sources magazine is launching its first annual "25 Top Environmental Champions" issue this coming summer. The issue will feature the best of the best—the environmental heroes who amaze, inspire and motivate, who are driven by creative ideas, a fierce passion and, most often, a stubborn persistence. From the solitary efforts of a single individual on the grassroots level to the wide-reaching impact of actions on a state or national level, we are accepting nominations for individuals and teams who, day after day, work to raise the level of awareness of vital ecological issues, laying forth critical mandates for the future—and sometimes achieving the impossible in the process.

    Who's eligible? Any individual or group of people (including non-profits, businesses and government agencies) that devote efforts to protecting the natural environment. Activities may include, but are not limited to: conservation; waste/pollution prevention; recycling; green purchasing; education; green design and building practices; product design; sustainable business practices; communications and outreach; and political activism. Self nominations are accepted.

    A jury will select winners based on the criteria outlined on the nomination form. Jurors include: Donald R. Horn, AIA, LEED Accredited Professional, Sustainable Design Program, U.S. General Services Administration; Katie Fry Hester, advisor, SustainAbility; Gina Baker, LEED Accredited Professional, Architect, Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann; Penny Bonda, FASID, director of communications, EnvironDesign Works; and Katie Sosnowchik, editor, Interiors & Sources. The 25 individuals and/or teams selected will be profiled in the July 2004 issue of Interiors & Sources magazine.

    For more information, or to download a nomination form, visit All nominations must be postmarked by May 5, 2004.

    What's Green at NeoCon?
    Once again this year, Interiors & Sources will shine the spotlight on the greening of the commercial furnishings industry in the exclusive Green Guide to NeoCon. This simple-to-use reference will highlight exhibitors at the 2004 NeoCon World's Trade Fair in Chicago, IL, that will be displaying eco-friendly products and services. Listings by floor, including the GREENlife exhibit, designed by TVS, will guide attendees through the Merchandise Mart to make the search for green as easy as possible. Participating showrooms and exhibits will be identified with decals and posters.

    In addition, an informal Green Walk will allow attendees to learn first-hand what suppliers are doing to positively impact the environment. Scheduled for both Monday and Tuesday afternoons, participating companies will have a representative on-hand that can intelligently discuss corporate environmental initiatives.

    For more information about the Green Guide to NeoCon, call (561) 627-3393.

    LEED® EB Released for Comment
    The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released for public comment during March the LEED for Existing Buildings (LEED-EB) Rating System, which targets the 26 billion gross square feet of existing commercial building space with environmental standards for optimizing building operations and maintenance. Over 90 existing building projects representing more than 17 million gross square feet in the U.S. and Canada participated in the LEED-EB pilot program. The current draft of the rating system incorporates feedback from those pilot projects including lessons learned and over 180 credit interpretation rulings. USGBC requested public comment to elicit constructive feedback from the broadest perspective in order to create the most effective and practical green operations and maintenance standard for the marketplace.

    The LEED Steering Committee will review public comments on the rating system and then it will go to ballot by the USGBC membership. Official release of the rating system is expected by mid-summer 2004.