For the past four years, Charlie Greene Studio has worked on designing and updating the look of Allsteel showrooms across the country, from San Francisco to Boston. T Clifton Design has done the same the past few years for Gunlocke’s showrooms.
Both commercial furniture companies are under the HNI Corporation, and they share a showroom inside theMART in Chicago, the venue that’s home to NeoCon. Each year ahead of the tradeshow, the showroom is refreshed and updated to display new products—and in 2019, the space achieved WELL Certified Gold, the first furniture showroom inside theMART to do so.
With the showroom’s consistent change in appearance, Allsteel and Gunlocke wanted to ensure they were maintaining a healthy, wellness-focused space for staff and visitors.
The companies achieved WELL Gold in their Chicago showroom through things like replacing exit signs containing mercury with LEDs; offering low-sugar, healthy snacks to visitors; implementing height-adjustable workstations; and providing a balance of different environments to foster mental wellness and productivity.
In Charlie Greene Studio’s fourth iteration of the Allsteel portion of the showroom, displayed at NeoCon 2019, the design firm found inspiration from 19th-century French poet Charles Baudelaire, who once said, “Inspiration comes of working every day.”
“We took the initial concept, ‘inspiration comes of working every day,’ and narrowed that down to a concept we call ‘Work Inspired,’” says Jason Hall, creative director for Charlie Greene Studio. “That’s what drove all of our decision-making about how people can be inspired by the place in which they work.”
[Related topic: 6 Biophilic Trends to Consider for Your Next Interior Project]
T Clifton Design focused its 2019 refresh on the concept of flexibility, by showing how the staged environments and the products themselves can be used in a myriad of ways as workplace solutions. Imagery that brought inspiration included origami and tessellation.
“Those things do end up appearing as accessories and props throughout the space, so salespeople could tell a story about flexibility,” says Travis Clifton, owner of T Clifton Design.
From breakout rooms that foster collaboration to more comfortable seating for private work, the Allsteel-Gunlocke showroom displays the idea of choice and flexibility in the workplace.
Read next: Our Most-Viewed Articles from 2019