Neocon: Catching a Glimpse Into Design’s Future

Earlier this month, and thanks due entirely to the ANEW family and friends, I was sent on my first ever business trip. It felt like I was swept from normal life, and then dropped into what I can only describe as Design Heaven.

I had a job to do though, this wasn’t vacation!  I was there to spread the word about environmentally responsible business practices, and of course ANEW and all that we do.

I was a tad bit nervous, but much to my surprise, NeoCon couldn’t have been better. It was a platform, an open floor, and the biggest networking event I have ever seen in my life. It was at this point that I absolutely fell in love with what NeoCon is and what it stands for.

New people, new designs, and new ideas everywhere you look. A seemingly infinite number of people were spread throughout twelve floors of space in Chicago’s Merchandise Mart, and they were all ears to the message we at ANEW are trying to spread. Perhaps creative people are more receptive to new ideas; we do it every day at work. Maybe these creative people, outgoing enough to travel to another city for a convention, are even more receptive to new ideas due to their adventurous natures. Whatever the case, it wasn’t difficult to see that these people were unanimously supportive of ANEW.

While talking with these creative people, I also noticed that some of the firms and designers present were aiming higher environmentally. Environmental programs of all kinds are beginning to pop up around the design community. I feel that due to education and programs like ANEW, people in the design world -designers especially- are starting to change the way they look at design. They’re going with refurbished pieces, recycled materials, and even eliminating waste from their routines.

Neocon is a convention about furniture, but getting to know the people behind the modern new designs was the most enlightening part of it all for me. The Environmental practices of big design firms are changing, and we will lead the way. Neocon said so!