Part of Nienkämper’s 50-year history, celebrated this May, is a story of sustainability. While the company’s commitment to craftsmanship and quality are well-known, it has always looked at sustainability as an important aspect of design, having worked with FSC-certified lumber and recycling more than 80 percent of its materials for years. In fact, it was explained during a recent factory tour in Toronto that if a design had too much material cut away, the company would redesign the piece to eliminate unnecessary waste.
During NeoCon 2018, attendees will see a prime and stunning example of Nienkämper’s ability to rework designs to fulfill its quality and sustainability initiatives—a felled redwood from Northern California that’s been crafted into a grand conference table. The dense rings visible across the tabletop display the tree’s rich life and quality of the wood.
During the design phase, a quality issue arose once the log was milled; it became obvious that something had used the redwood as its nest, having burrowed an unsightly hole in the middle of the slab. Such an unwanted portion of the wood became inspiration.
Noting the need for integrated technology in today’s office furniture, the wood was cut to include a channel straight down the middle, which was fitted with wiring. The raw-edged, enormous table became a modern-day fixture that adds lightness to the design, as well as a necessary component of contemporary office furniture.