• OMA designed "This is Knoll," a hypermodern take on Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's modernist masterwork, the Barcelona Pavilion.

  • Knoll and OMA collaborated with SolidNature, famous for its natural stones, and artist Sabine Marcelis.

  • Knoll presents the Krusin Collection 016, designed by Marc Krusin, a family of refined, soft chairs (on view at left with the Saarinen Table).

  • Also presented: Avio, designed by Piero Lissoni, a new, modular sofa system based around a structural steel beam.

  • The show celebrates enduring modern pieces designed by Florence Knoll, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Eero Saarinen and Harry Bertoia.

  • The Diamond Chair, released in gold in 2015 for the Bertoia Centennial, appears with Gold editions of the Platner Collection.

  • Pilot by Knoll, the lounge chairs designed by Barber & Osgerby, are now available in Europe; Knoll previewed the chairs at Salone 2015.

  • Knoll presents new collections by Piero Lissoni, left, and Marc Krusin, right.

Press Release

Knoll Presents the New Collections and Iconic Products at the 2016 Salone Internazionale del Mobile 

 

MILAN, April 12, 2016—For the 55th edition of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan, 2016, Knoll presents new designs that confirm the creative vision and guiding philosophy that have made it a world-famous brand with an illustrious heritage. 

In keeping with the motto Modern Always®, Knoll presents new designs by Piero Lissoni and Marc Krusin alongside modern classics by architects like Florence Knoll, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Eero Saarinen and Harry Bertoia, reflecting the determination to always offer innovative ideas, regardless of passing fashions—ideas that last in time. The latest research has generated products by contemporary designers Piero Lissoni and Marc Krusin, guided by design imperatives of comfort, balance, elegance and functional quality.

The collaboration with Piero Lissoni—a previous design collaborator with Knoll—has led to a system of upholstered furnishings with an innovative technological concept. With its nonchalant sense of style, the Avio sofa by Piero Lissoni plays with contrasts, from the metal structure to the soft cushions, the essential lines that conceal complex workmanship to aesthetic detailing based on painstaking material and structural research. Alongside the sofa, Knoll presents the Krusin Collection 016 designed by Marc Krusin, a family of chairs in a range of variations for outstanding functional versatility. 

Once again this year, Knoll has called on OMA, the studio co-founded by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, to design "This is Knoll"—a hypermodern version of  Ludwig Mies van der Rohe's modernist masterwork, the Barcelona Pavilion—with a focus on chromatic effects, stylistic twists and timeless furnishings. Occupying an even larger display area than last year, the OMA-designed space, refined down to the smallest details, emphasizes the creation of atmosphere—thanks to collaborations with SolidNature—famous all over the world for its natural stones used in prestigious projects—and Sabine Marcelis—whose material experimentations achieve new, surprising visual effects. The itinerary through the space reveals fresh nuances, highlighting signature classics and design icons alongside the new products. 

Andrew Cogan, CEO of Knoll, Inc., comments: "Hans and Florence Knoll created a business founded on an unwavering commitment to good design. The goal of our innovation is always timelessness and adaptability—rejecting short-term trends and anticipating the inevitability of change. Our task is to ensure that Knoll remains vital and synonymous with good design for generations to come. Knoll is Modern Always because modern always works."

Salone Internazionale del Mobile 2016

Avio Sofa System Collection
Designed by Piero Lissoni, 2016

Avio, designed by Piero Lissoni, is a new, contemporary and versatile sofa component system that reinterprets and improves the use of any type of space. It is ideal for those who appreciate solid, elegant design that epitomizes a comfortable, relaxed lifestyle. 

Modular and linear, with a light structure that blends perfectly into different settings, Avio is driven by aesthetic design research, skillfully balancing spatial relationships and proportions. The new sofa combines functional and visual poise, playing with the contract between the lightness of the slim structural framework and the substantial volume of the seats. A contrast resolved in the harmony of an ideal sofa for home and for contract applications, perfectly inserted in the stylistic direction set by Florence Knoll.

"This is a true industrial project, of great complexity," says the designer, "based on the idea of a structural steel beam that through a series of brackets supports different parts for diversified use: the seats are conceived as platforms, but also as support surfaces made of different materials. In practice, it is a product that changes the traditional idea of upholstered furniture, taking the form of a technological and aesthetic alphabet to assemble in different compositions, for different needs."

Avio is made with a load-bearing structure, a steel beam from which supports branch out for seats, backs and tables. This framework translates into a versatile system that can generate benches, sofas for two or three people, a chaise longue, tabletops, in a practically infinite sequence, including corner compositions of impressive size. The padding provides maximum comfort, and the sofa can be covered in leather or fabric, completed with decorative throw cushions. An object of clear, precise beauty, ideal for everything a sofa is supposed to offer: for resting, conversing, reading, listening to music, sleeping, watching a film, enjoying an aperatif...

"My points of reference," Lissoni continues, "are Mies van der Rohe, Eero Saarinen, Florence Knoll. Names that have awesome importance for anyone who works on design. Nevertheless, I don't think we should hide in the shadow of the great masters: you always have to come to terms with the contemporary world, without making heritage into the sole value with which to approach the future."

The sofa system premiered at the Salone del Mobile is joined by cabinets, and in the near future it will be enhanced by new elements to gradually expand its functional range and versatility.

Matrioska Credenza
Designed by Piero Lissoni, 2016

A sensual game of full and empty parts, lights and shadows: Piero Lissoni has designed Matrioska, a variable-geometry storage system. Each piece can be moved at will to create always different squences, offering a glimpse of the contents without fully revealing them.

Traditional materials—wood, marble, glass—give rise to a structure that is solid and essential at the same time. The effect is almost immaterial, and the pieces can be closed with doors or left open, arranged at regular distances from one another or in free compositions.

Krusin Collection 016
Designed by Marc Krusin, 2016

Quality craftmanship, simple, precise lines and refined details are the key terms of the new seating system designed by Marc Krusin.

This collection embodies the perfect blend of clean lines and remarkable padded softness. It juxtaposes compact forms with ample, comfortable seats. The result is a harmonious object, available in three versions: a seat with or without armrests, and an archair with an enveloping back.

Not just good looks, but also functional quality: the detail of the meeting between the seat and back makes it possible to easily move the armchair in a practical, immediate way. The collection includes three different seating types sharing the same bases, available in die-cast aluminum or solid ash, in a range of finishes. The cover can be selected from the Knoll range of offerings, including leathers and velvet, wool or cotton fabrics. 

"It's much less about me (and my design), and much more about excellence in a product. Less ego, better results." This is how Marc Krusin explains the dedication that goes into his work, in a single phrase that sums up the character of a designer whose ongoing alliances with Knoll began in 2011 with a collection of tables and seating that won the Good Design Award that same year. 

Based on these excellent results, in 2016 the collaboration continues between Knoll and the designer, who after years of work in Italy has opened his own studio in London. "The objective is to introduce a discreet product that is silently attuned to the surrounding space. This is the thinking behind the conception and design of the new products, which will then work perfectly with the company's classic icons," says Benjamin Pardo, Executive Vice President of Design, Knoll.

The study of space and objects, with extreme attention to detail, has enabled Krusin to propose a series of items that are precisely aligned with the philosophy that has always inspired Knoll's work: discretion and timeless quality. 

"I often think about the objects I design as classics: presences that stand out for their discretion and balance. And my job is to perfect them, honing the proportions, the details, to improve their image and their functional quality. I have imagined this seating family as noble objects that you learn to appreciate more with the passage of time. Something like a bespoke suit that gets more elegant with wear. For this collection I wanted to create bespoke beauty, perceptible in the fine workmanship and the details."

 

New colors and finishes for classic and contemporary Knoll products

The Bertoia Collection 
Chair in cowhide with a new bronze finish
Designed by Harry Bertoia

The Bertoia family now includes an elegant new bronze finish and a refined cowhide cover in natural, black and dark brown. The modern structure reinforces its character, juxtaposed with a material of timeless style and an increasingly contemporary finish.

The Bertoia Collection
Chair & Stool—Outdoor
Designed by Harry Bertoia

The classic Bertoia Side Chair presented at the conclusion of the collection's tribute year, 2015, for the centennial birth of the designer, is now available as an outdoor version in three different shell colors—white, black and gray—with the metal structure painted in white or black. A modern and colorful interpretation of an inimitable chair, faithfully conserving ts unique linear design, the new piece stands out for the comfort of the seat, adapting to the widest range of contexts, from residential to contract. The Bertoia Barstool is also available in this new version. A cushion in six different colors, breathable but waterproof, ideal for prolonged outdoor use, adds another touch of innovation. 

Womb Settee
Designed by Eero Saarinen

Knoll presents the Womb Settee, a two-seat sofa designed by Eero Saarinen in 1948, prior to his major architectural work for the General Motors Technical Center in Michigan, a complex for over 5,000 employees. The settee has never gone out of style, and is still perfect for all settings, from the living room to the bedroom, as well as the office. 

Today Knoll has decided to reissue the piece, and like many of the items designed by Saarinen, the Womb Settee has called for particular production techniques and exceptionally high-performance materaisl. With this sturdy oversized form, once again Saarinen emphasized the concept of necessary, timeless function. 

"The need for such seats has never gone away. Now, more than ever, we have the need to relax," Eero Saarinen said. The Womb Chair doubles its comfort and joines the Relax collection, with a foam-coated chassis in soft polyurethane and down-filled cushions for a chair that is sturdy, comfortable and welcoming at the same time. 

Pilot Chair and Ottoman for Knoll
Designed by Barber & Osgerby

Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby's first collaboration with Knoll was in 2013 when they designed a collection of sofas. They then went on to create the highly successful Pilot Chair in 2015, an innovative, upholstered lounge chair. Pilot is a simple, comfortable and lightweight seating system designed for home, work and contract use. The collection expands on this year to include an ottoman that sits alongside Pilot, a natural extension of the collection with a matching cast aluminum base. 

"This is Knoll" by OMA

Once again this year, Knoll has called on OMA, the studio co-founded by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, to design and install the company's stand at the Salone del Mobile. The space has been created to adapt to the flow of visitors, thanks to the unique choice of using mobile partitions to put this idea into practice. The walls of the main diagonal slide, making it possible to divide the stand into two separate sections, or to  keep the area as open as possible.

OMA has chosen different materials that reinforce the concept of heterogeneity and create perfect backdrops for the products of the Knoll collection: soft and solid, organic and synthetic, transparent and opaque. 

The first particular feature is that the new stand by OMA is a hypermodern version of the pavilion of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, where natural stone—today as in the past—plays a key role at center stage. As an expert partner of OMA in the implementation of complex architectural projects with natural stone, SolidNature has contributed to transform the design concept into pure presence, testing the limits of material transformation with elegance and lightness, using some of the world's most exclusive types of marble, like SolidNature's signature travertine.

The "Architectural Glass Panels" by Sabine Marcelis represent a true experiment, combining glass, metal and touches of color to create architectural panels that act as spatial dividers or theatrical wings. OMA asked the designer to create a custom project for "This is Knoll" at the Salone del Mobile 2016. The work completes the theatrical choreography invented by OMA, bringing out its playful, unconventional side. A sign, a color, a material.

The new products become the characters of a narrative, establishing a relationship with their surroundings while generating change and innovation. A new way of living based on personality and creativity designed for both home and work, from the most private rooms to the most public facilities. 

Past the entrance, where the dynamic 04 Counter worksurface of the "Tools for Life" collection designed by OMA for Knoll in 2013 is on display, the focus shifts to the new creations of 2016: first Avio by Piero Lissoni, in different compositions perfectly mingling with the classics of the collection; then the new chairs by Marc Krusin. The path inside the stand reveals new interpretations of design icons mixed with the latest pieces, harmoniously shifting from minute details to elegant, unexpected settings.

"Our space at the Salone illustrates the innovative spirit of Knoll design through the new creations developed for this year by Piero Lissoni and Marc Krusin, celebrating the past and future story of the brand at the same time," says Demetrio Apollini, President of Knoll Europe. For Benjamin Pardo, Executive Vice President of Design, Knoll, "OMA has created our stand to emphasize the contribution of our founders, who brought the benefits of modern design into both homes and places of work."

"Knoll is Modern Always® because modern always works."

 


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