Modern Always®

Celebrating more than 80 years of iconic design for the home and office

Knoll uses modern design to connect people to their work, their lives, their world. Since 1938, Knoll has been recognized internationally for creating workplace and residential furnishings that inspire, evolve, and endure. Today, our commitment to modern design, understanding of the workplace, and dedication to sustainable design have yielded a unique portfolio of products that respond and adapt to changing needs. Here is our story.

Above: Hans and Florence Knoll, workplace and residential design pioneers.

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"I feel that it must be possible to harmonize the old and new in our civilization"
- Mies van der Rohe

A belief in modern design.

For more than 80 years Knoll has remained true to the Bauhaus design philosophy that modern furniture should complement architectural space, not compete with it. At Knoll, modern design has been our guiding principle, and our passion has been shared by customers and design professionals worldwide. 

Our founders, Hans and Florence Knoll, embraced the creative genius at the Bauhaus School and the Cranbrook Academy of Art to create new types of furniture and environments for the workplace. Their approach, where craftsmanship joined with technology through the use of design, anchors our perspective and shapes the values we endeavor to live by today.

80 years of landmark collaborations, with pioneering modernists to bold contemporary designers, define not only the past but the future of Knoll through active, recent, and future partnerships with Antenna Design, Don Chadwick, Formway Design, Jehs & Laub, Joseph D’Urso, David Adjaye, and OMA.

  • Pioneering private office design. Florence Knoll table desk and credenza with Pollock Chairs.

More than 80 years of workplace experience.

Florence Knoll developed the idea of the modern office and pioneered the interior design profession. 

Through research and experience worldwide, we set standards in solving practical workplace needs. From private office furniture for individuals to the evolving spectrum of open plan furniture that supports an ultra-linked, connected workforce, we offer a definitive resource to address the dynamic activities of the contemporary office.

Today, we are inspiring a new generation with a dedication to the most innovative and dynamic designs for corporations, healthcare organizations, educational institutions and governmental agencies.

Whether the goal is to encourage teamwork, set ergonomic guidelines, plan for new technologies or reinvent the office, we work closely with customers to solve workplace issues and accommodate the diversity of its users. 

Spotlight: Modernism at Risk

Less than a century after their construction, Modernist masterpieces— critical documents in the history of architecture — are being routinely demolished, disfigured or abandoned. As part of Knoll’s effort to contribute to the communities where we do business, we are the founding sponsor of the World Monuments Fund (WMF) Modernism at Risk program. WMF is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the world’s architectural heritage.

Modernism at Risk includes programs dedicated to preservation and public advocacy, with the intention of attracting international resources to the dangers faced by Modernist buildings across the globe.

A cornerstone of Modernism at Risk is the World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize, which is awarded biennially to a designer or design firm whose work enhances the public’s awareness of the seminal role that Modernism plays in the built environment. Three prizes have been awarded thus far:

ADGB Trade School, Germany, 2008

Zonnestraal Sanatorium, Netherlands, 2010

Hizuchi Elementary School, Japan, 2012

Knoll Advertising Campaign Modern Always®

The best of classic and contemporary Knoll design.

Knoll continues its ‘Modern Always’ print advertising campaign, developed for its 75th anniversary in 2013, by celebrating Knoll’s entire brand storytelling and its heritage pillars —past, present and future— since the company's founding in 1938.

Under the ‘Modern always’ headline, Knoll’s latest campaign imagery reveals the essence of modern living with a contemporary approach without losing a connection to the past. Knoll’s vision and its timeless values is perfeclty represented over the years juxtaposing latest collections along with modern classics and iconic products. Modern and evocative architectures become the ideal setting for Knoll’s designs.

A comprehensive product portfolio.

No company can match the array of our products, which combine a Modernist aesthetic with residential appeal.

This point of view nurtured by Florence Knoll, has become the trademark of Knoll design. Today, it connects us to a new generation seeking workplaces that are comfortable for everyday living.

We offer thoughtful, inventive products that respond to individual work styles and transcend multiple generations. Furniture, accessories, textiles, felts and leathers that stimulate the senses and allow you to express who you are and what you value. 

We connect you to your work environment. While knowledge from the past can be used to serve our customers today, our spirit and methodology are, and have always been, forward-looking. We evaluate technologies. We assess new materials. We test new processes. 

A commitment to our customers.

We honor what Eero Saarinen called “the enthusiasm, the inspiration and the concern for human beings” that Hans Knoll brought to his customers. Whether you are refurbishing a small office or orchestrating a large project with complex logistics, we can guide you through the process of defining your furniture needs, meeting the highest standards for quality, on-time delivery and customer service. 

Our flexible manufacturing capabilities and our rich network of custom product resources can accommodate virtually any customer specification. From planning support to project management and installation, Knoll provides an unparalleled level of service. 

We operate four manufacturing sites in North America: East Greenville, Pennsylvania; Grand Rapids and Muskegon, Michigan; and Toronto, Ontario. In addition, we have plants in Foligno and Graffignana, Italy. 

A focus on the environment.

We are a leader in policies and practices designed to protect the biosphere, conserve natural resources and reduce waste. Our environmental sustainability programs focus on three areas: climate change; third-party certification; and environmentally sensitive materials.

We are proud of our leadership position on climate change. Our investment since 2004 in energy efficiency initiatives and infrastructure has topped $3.0 million. Following our success in reducing greenhouse gas emissions at our manufacturing facilities, exceeding our goal by 23%, we redefined our carbon reduction strategy and joined the Carbon Disclosure Project, which commits to further reductions and public disclosure. 

All Knoll manufacturing facilities worldwide are ISO 14001 certified, requiring that we minimize harmful effects on the environment and achieve ongoing improvements in environmental performance. Our global sourcing initiatives ensure that we use materials from suppliers that share our commitment to excellence and sustainability. LEARN MORE

A global perspective.

We bring you an international perspective through our sales and design teams. 

We work in multiple geographies worldwide through three sales and service organizations: Knoll North America, Knoll International Europe and Knoll International. We actively seek the expertise and insight of designers that represent multi-cultural perspectives: from Formway Design in New Zealand to Don Chadwick in California, and from Antenna Design and Shelton, Mindel & Associates in New York to Richard Sapper, OMA, David Adjaye, and Irma Boom in Europe.

And with dealers in more than 50 countries, we serve both local companies as well as a broad array of multinationals that require consistently high quality workplace standards throughout their organizations worldwide.