The Shaw Contract Group showroom was among the most buzzed about spaces at NeoCon 2015. Here, go behind the scenes with our SmithGroupJJR correspondents for images and exclusive insights from Reesie Duncan, Shaw’s VP of creative and design.
Shaw Contract Group was our last stop at NeoCon 2015, and we couldn’t have imagined a better way to end the trip than with a showroom tour by the company’s VP of Creative and Design, Reesie Duncan. Duncan shared the inspiration behind their new product launch and how it’s changing the built environment in a powerful way.
As we walked through the showroom, we were immediately drawn to the pattern, color, and texture that saturated the entire left half of the showroom in the Park Collection. As the name suggests, the collection was inspired by public parks and spaces, from various public art installations, sculptural gardens, to New York’s High Line. The designers studied physical elements such as natural pathways, clearings, and landmarks, along with the interaction between the sun and surrounding landscape. But what really helped create a layered concept for Shaw Contract Group, was the study of human interaction within these spaces. This, according to Duncan, imbues the line with the ability to “enhance our mood and open our minds creating a transition from communal energy to quiet, single spaces.”
The Park Collection stood out among others we saw at NeoCon. The naturally curved and complex patterns in “Explore” and “Reflect” promote a relaxed feel perfect for a casual and collaborative space. Brilliant tones of green and yellow create a sense of vibrancy, and when paired with the neutral grey/beige tones contrasting elements occur lending a sense of energy in a space. The colorways for Shaw’s new lines are what Duncan describes as a “veiled color” — hovering somewhere between a pastel and a hyper bright.
The “Drift” and “Linger” patterns have beautiful gradient textures that can be incorporated with non-vinyl hard surface flooring, Eco Worx Resilient, to create a seamless transition. This new introduction to hard surface flooring is high-performance and PVC-free.
After experiencing the casual vibe of the Park Collection, we were eager to feast our eyes on the elegance of the textures and patterns in Noble Materials, the collection occupying the other half of the showroom. Contrasting beautifully to the Park Collection, Noble Materials plays beautifully into the theme “Opposites Emerge”. An “exquisite take on the study of alchemy”, this sophisticated line of tile and broadloom celebrates the contrast between natural and opulent. The designers were inspired by studying the charts of alchemist that are plotted to transform base metals into noble metals, such as gold and silver. “Harmony was created when smooth, matte surfaces, and gleaming lustrous metal accents pair together,” said Duncan.
Shaw Contract Group’s designers envisioned this line as a natural cut of stone serving as the base, with lustrous metal veins running though to create a very striking graphic. This line represents a strong and modern aesthetic with various scale and pattern, and creates a dynamic field of carpet that will be a showstopper in any project.
We were captivated by the brilliant linear lines in the “Form” tile contrast against the dark background color. The lighter gray colorway in the same pattern evokes a completely different, and slightly subtle tone. Both the “Honed” and “Alchemy” tiles have a geometric pattern, and when paired with the neutral pattern “Slab”, a very complex and unique floor can be achieved.
As open concept workplace environments continue to dominate the market, flexibility is critical. Shaw Contract Group’s newest products eliminate the in-between spaces and embraces/emphasizes contrast. By doing so, they have given designers another tool to help define spaces with scale and pattern in flooring, rather than physical barriers, giving our clients more flexibility in the long run. We are excited to see a cohesive collection like this enter the flooring market. The seamless integration of the various products within both the Noble Metals and the Park collections work together to create a cohesive, yet dynamic environment.