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Silver Clouds in window of CK flagship store seen from Madison Avenue

New Project Recreates Combo Calvin Klein-Andy Warhol Silver Clouds

It was announced last year that Calvin Klein had entered into a four-year agreement with The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts that will allow the fashion company to license Warhol’s art across its collections and activations. The agreement offers Calvin Klein’s Chief Creative Officer Raf Simons access to the full breadth of Warhol’s creations—including never-before-published works.

New Project was tapped to execute the latest iteration of Calvin Klein’s partnership with the Foundation: Warhol’s Silver Clouds reimagined by Simons as a site-specific installation for the 654 Madison Avenue flagship.

The silver Mylar balloons were printed with images used in the Spring 2018 CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC runway collection (including some from the Death and Disaster series as well as portraits of Warhol pals Dennis Hopper and Sandra Brant). Special fans were painted to match the bright yellow interior scaffolding and installed to ensure the balloons, filled with an exacting measure of helium and air, floated through the space just as they did in Warhol’s Factory and Leo Castelli Gallery decades ago.

New Project undertook several tests, both in the shop and in the store under the cloak of night, to determine the specific mixture needed to fill the balloons, to observe their behavior, and to add features to the space to tune the air flow patterns.

The installation has been a huge success, bringing smiles to patrons who freely interact with the floating works of art. Be sure to catch it while you can—like all things pop, the installation is fleeting. On view at 654 Madison Avenue through February 28, 2018.

After figuring out how to direct the air flow, we customized an armada of fans.

And poles and fixtures.

We inflated and tested the balloons in the shop office first.

Once the Silver Clouds were installed, the store was transformed.

But a lot of adjustments went into the process to make sure the balloons behaved as we wanted. Check out this time lapse video of the overnight test to see what the balloons do when they think we aren’t watching!

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Think & Brew

It’s been a couple of years, but over the holidays we dusted off the home brew equipment and jumped back into one of our favorite hobbies: custom beer fabrication. Head brewmaster Patrick Barth directed the operations which entailed a batch of Four Seasons Pale Ale followed by an Extra Special Bitter. Thanks to our friends at Bitter & Esters, we used some primo ingredients to ensure our brew would be extra tasty.

After a slightly messy but fun mashing and boiling process, we let the beer ferment for a couple of weeks and monitored it carefully. Another entertaining session of bottling and capping followed to set up the conditioning process which allows the beer to naturally carbonate. Two weeks later, we had some pretty tasty brew on our hands (and in our mugs). The process and the results were so much fun that we’re ready to start on our next batch. If you’ve got a suggestion or want to come by for a taste test, let us know!

image of beer making ingredients

We started with quality ingredients: dry malt extract, malt extract, grains, and hops.

Pouring dry malt extract into boiling pot of wort

Patrick adds the dry malt extract to make the wort.

Measuring temperature of the wort while the grains steep in the pot

We monitor the temperature carefully to ensure the wort doesn’t boil.

Image of open bag of dried, green hops to be added to the wort

Mmmm! Fresh, delicious hops!

Dennis smelling bag of open hops

Dennis inspects the hops. Smells like beer…or something.

Patrick pouring hot wort into container to be cooled

Patrick transfers the wort to be cooled and strained.

Beer is poured into a 5 gallon glass jug for fermentation

The cooled wort is transferred to the vessel where it will ferment for a couple of weeks as the yeast does its magic.

Patrick measuring alcohol by volume with beer with tube device

Patrick measures the ABV level in the first batch. Looks good!

Beer in 5 gallon jug is transferred to bucket with spigot for bottling

The beer is transferred from the fermenting vessel to the bucket for easy bottling.

Dan fills a bottle from the spigot

Dan bottles the flat beer so that it can condition and naturally carbonate.

Corinne uses cap crimping tool in the bottling process

Corinne caps and seals with the handy crimper.

Image of a dozen bottles with orange beer caps in a cardboard case

The first case!

Image of two bottles with custom New Project labels

The finished product. Thanks to Thiago for the label design.

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New Project Heads to London for Bloomberg LP

In late October, Bloomberg L.P. unveiled its new European headquarters designed by Foster + Partners and a special installation by New Project. The 3.2 acre London site includes numerous commissioned artworks and an exhibit designed by Studio Joseph about the legendary Bloomberg Terminal’s history. New Project worked closely with Principal Wendy Evans Joseph and Associate Connie Wu to realize their design which complemented the aesthetic of the building while capturing the unique, forward-looking identity of Bloomberg.

The display took the form of three interlocking and one stand-alone Möbius strip-like shapes made of aluminum and fiberglass to support embedded terminals and educational information. Studio Joseph’s impressive design for the individual components cantilevered eight feet from a single point requiring New Project to employ our engineering as well as fabrication know-how.

In July, Studio Joseph provided New Project with a 3-D model of the finished display from which we created design engineering drawings for production. The substrate was 5-axis milled from 3-pound EPS foam and fitted around a laser cut aluminum structure. The forms were glassed with carbon fiber, fiberglass, and epoxy resin, then coated with a satin automotive finish. After the Bruce Mau-designed graphics were applied, another clear coat was applied for protection. The terminal supports were fabricated out of steel and then powder coated. From end to end, the entire installation measured almost 24 feet long by 20 feet wide.

Once the fabrication was complete, we built custom crates and oversaw the shipping to London where we installed the display while the finishing touches to the building were still being undertaken.  We completed the entire project in under 3 months, including overseas shipping and installation. The end result was a stunning interactive display that invited people to learn about the technology that revolutionized an industry and laid the foundation for a billion-dollar business.

Design drawings for one component of Mobius installation

Milled foam readied for aluminum support structures

Laser cut aluminum support structures

Matt welds the supports to the steel base

 

Frank fits the support into the foam

Dustin preps the fiberglass forms

After the forms are painted and graphics applied, Frank and team build custom crates to ensure safe passage to London

Chris’s view of the installation process from above

 

 

 

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We Made the Inc. 5000!

New Project is proud to announce it has been named to Inc. Magazine’s list of the 5,000 fastest-growing private U.S. companies of 2017. Inc. is a monthly publication and website that focuses on growing companies. The companies that made the Inc. 5000 list, on average, have grown six-fold since 2013. New Project is pleased to make its debut at number 2,992 on the list.

Since its founding in 2004 as a two-man company, New Project has grown well beyond its humble beginnings in the former home and studios of its founders, Patrick Barth and Dennis Potami. The shop now occupies 12,500 square feet of space in its own two-story building, employs more than 30 technicians and administrative staff, and has seen its billings grow year over year.

When Dennis and Patrick started New Project, they felt it was a way to professionalize the creative work they were already doing. And as they continued to deliver for their clients, their reputation grew, as did demand for their services. As artists, one of the biggest obstacles they initially faced was codifying and implementing administrative processes and systems in order to serve their growing client base. Connecting with business-minded professionals through their participation in programs like Entrepreneurs’ Organization and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses helped enhance their business acumen as well as expand their exposure to other entrepreneurs. As the business has continued to grow, Patrick and Dennis have been able to sustain an entrenched company culture of respect and a dedication to quality workmanship, helping ensure its ongoing success.

Being named to the Inc. 5000 list is just the latest milestone on New Project’s successful path. More smart growth and exciting developments are certainly on the horizon!

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Space Exploration: United Nations

Every tourist knows about The Met and MoMA, but New York is filled with many museums and exhibition venues off the beaten trail. In this series, we explore some of the city’s less well known cultural spaces and meet the people who organize them.

UN Exhibits

Within the United Nations Headquarters exists not only an incredible collection of permanent art and gifts given to the UN by member states, but also space in the Visitors’ Lobby which features changing exhibitions. These shows are dedicated to spreading awareness of key topics that the UN’s work addresses such as climate change, violence against women, and human rights. Additionally, there is an online gallery featuring information about current and past exhibitions.

We visited with Melissa Budinic whose office is responsible for exhibits open to the public at the UN.

New Project: Where are the UN exhibits located and how can one visit them?

Melissa Budinic: There are three “galleries” managed by the UN Exhibits office. Located in the United Nations Headquarters Visitors’ Lobby (1st Avenue at 46th Street in New York City), two exhibit spaces are located straight ahead of the entrance toward the left and the third space is located along the curved wall leading to the tour check in area.

Admission to the galleries and public areas is free with government-issued photo ID and open Monday-Friday 9:30 am – 4:30 pm, Saturday-Sunday: 10:00 am – 4:30 pm (closed weekends January and February).

NP: Who organizes the shows and what are they about?

MB: Exhibitions are either developed internally at the UN or by outside entities/individuals. The exhibition proposals are reviewed by the Exhibits Committee. Shows must be educational, offer information on key issues relating to the work of the UN, and be endorsed by a relevant office within the UN (for example, an exhibition on child labor might be sponsored by UNICEF). Past exhibitions have revolved around topics such as the international campaign to ban land mines, ecological and economic importance of healthy oceans, and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

NP: How often do they change?

MB: Exhibitions are usually on view for one to two months. We may have one, two, or three shows on view simultaneously, in addition to an ongoing exhibition about the history and renovation of the UN Headquarters in another space. We present approximately 15-20 exhibitions each year in the Visitors’ Lobby, many of which are also included on the website for those who can’t make it to New York to see them in person.

NP: Do you have any favorites?

MB: Not really. Each exhibit is about a different topic, so every time I get to learn something different about the kinds of work that the UN does.

NP: Can anyone submit at proposal for a show?

MB: Certainly, as long as they follow the guidelines.  The UN doesn’t present art and solo exhibitions. The shows must cover several countries. For details, please send an email to exhibitscommittee@un.org

NP: What’s up next?

MB: In January, we’ll be presenting an exhibition called State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda. The exhibition is organized by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and coincides with International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27. The exhibition is on view starting January 12, 2017.

NP: Thank you for sharing your time!

To learn about more interesting things to see and do while visiting the United Nations (like eating in the delegates dining room, taking a guided tour, and getting a special UN passport stamp), check out the UN website.

UN Exhibits entrance text

The exhibition Palestinian Embroidery: Threads of Continuity, Identity and Empowerment included stunning examples of elaborate embroidery by Palestinian women from the 19th through 21st centuries, photography, dolls, and dresses by contemporary Palestinian fashion designers.

Palestinian Embroidery

Exhibition image detail

UN Exhibits: Palestinian Embroidery 1

Intricate textiles

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Contemporary fashion faces a row of portraits of the UN Secretaries General in rug form donated by member state Iran.

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Installation view of Millennium Villages Project (MVP) – A photographic essay on sustainable development. This exhibition featured photographs of four projects implemented by the Millennium Villages in Ethiopia, Ghana, Rwanda, and Senegal. Led by Professor Jeffrey Sachs, the Millennium Villages Project contributed to eliminating extreme poverty in ten African countries over ten years (2005-2015).

Gift from Thailand

A gift by member state Thailand to the United Nations, one of many remarkable pieces of the collection on view at the UN Headquarters.

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On the Road to Menlo

Eight years ago, New Project collaborated with the artist and avid cyclist David Byrne on a series of 9 bike racks he designed for the New York City Department of Transportation. The temporary public art pieces were created at the time to spur more interest in biking in the city. Each powder-coated steel bike rack was sited in a location that related to its design: a dollar sign on Wall Street, a woman’s shoe in front of Bergdorf Goodman, an abstract sculptural form in front of MoMA.

8 years later, David conceived of a new set of bike racks to be installed in Menlo Park, CA near Silicon Valley in conjunction with his exhibition at PACE Gallery. Fortunately for us, he once again reached out to New Project to collaborate. We worked with the artist to execute five site-specific designs including a pointing finger, a cloud, a rocket, an infinity shape, and the @ symbol.

David came by the studio last week and we asked him a few questions about the project.

New Project: We understand you were inspired by your role as a juror for the New York City Department of Transportation’s 2008 CityRacks Design Competition to create your own bike rack designs. How did you arrive at the designs for the first round of racks that New Project fabricated?

David Byrne: Yes, the city held a competition for bike rack designs and I wasn’t submitting my designs (mine would be difficult to mass produce) but as a fun item to amuse the DOT (Dept. of Transportation) and increase awareness. I sketched out imaginary racks for specific neighborhoods. Pace (David’s gallery) saw them and suggested we actually make them….and with Scanga (Bill Scanga of Pace Gallery) we began to knock around ideas with New Project about how that could be done.

NP: What was your experience like working with New Project?

DB: This is going to sound like gushing, but it was so easy and their work is so rigorous and they’re so sensitive to the way we creative types think – perfect.

NP: How did you feel seeing your bike racks across the city?

DB: I LOVED seeing the racks out there – I felt “I’m a physical part of New York City now!”

NP: Are you inspired to make more public art? Would you like to see David Byrne bike racks in other cities, other countries?

DB: I’m very open to the idea – though as mentioned, to do mass produced racks at a reasonable cost they’d be less one of a kind than these….however these draw attention to the need for racks, even if they don’t solve the problem.

NP: How did the 2016 Silicon Valley series come about? 

DB: With a collaborator, I’m doing an immersive installation in a Pace pop up gallery and they thought – hey, how about more bike racks for the Silicon Valley people out here?! Some businesses or Stanford might even buy some. So again I sketched out some ideas that are very specific to that world….

NP: In your 2010 book, Bicycle Diaries, you share your adventures from the perspective of a global urban cyclist and humanist. The advantages of seeing a city from the seat of a bicycle are obvious; how do you think we can convince more people to share your passion?

DB: I think one can’t “convince” people – and doing it because it’s good for you or for the planet isn’t going to convince folks either – but if they try it they may enjoy it…forgive me, this is terrible, but realistic, if a man sees beautiful women passing by on bikes, he may decide it might be something worth trying….if business folks begin to commute on bikes and the city makes it safe, then it lessens the stigma that only scruffy types or hipsters ride bikes.

NP: Where are you and your bike heading next?

DB: I’ve got a loaner during the install in Menlo Park and Palo Alto!

The Institute Presents: NEUROSOCIETY, an immersive theatrical experience co-created by David Byrne and Mala Gaonkar, will be on view October 27, 2017 through March 31, 2017 in Menlo Park, CA.

David Byrne drawings for new bike racks
David Byrne’s concepts for the new bike racks

Scale model of DB bike rack 
Patrick with a scale model

Molly welding up DB's infinity bike rack
Molly welding the infinity rack

Molly setting up, checking the tack welds
Molly checks the tack welds 

DB rack post-grind
Infinity post-grind

After powder coating
After powder coating

DC and team with finished racks

Team David with the bike racks before painting (left to right): Dennis, Aaron, Kelly, Molly, David, Patrick, Ethan, Fielding

 

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My Very Eccentric Mom Joyfully Sells Unique Ninjas at PS163Q

In 2013, artist Nanna Debois Buhl received a commission through the Public Art for Public Schools program to create a work of art for a new addition to a high school in Flushing, Queens. Nanna and her consultant, Nathalie Pozzi, reached out to New Project for assistance with the fabrication of the sculptural installation.

After visiting the school, Nanna created a proposal for a model of our solar system combined with a collection of mnemonic phrases written by students from the school. Both components were to be made out of steel with a bright, red, glossy, powder coated finish.

New Project worked with the artist, her consultant, the NYC School Construction Authority, engineers, and the general contractors to ensure the work would be fabricated and installed as the artist envisioned as the school addition was being built.

We spoke to Nanna about The Planets, her new installation at PS 163Q in Flushing, NY.

NP: How did this project come about? When did it start?

NDB: The project began in spring of 2013, when I was invited to participate in a competition for a public commission for PS163Q initiated by the NYC Department of Education, NYC School Construction Authority, and the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for Art Program.

I made a site visit to get an understanding of the school, its profile, and its architecture. My proposal was an installation for the school’s lobby consisting of a model of the solar system and a collection of phrases, written by students from the school, for remembering the order of the planets in the solar system (planetary mnemonics).

Over the last three years, the work has been developed in collaboration with New Project (fabrication), Nathalie Pozzi (artist’s consultant) and Anni’s (graphic design).

Have you done other public commissions or works in schools?

Yes, Journey to the End of the Night (2010) is a public commission I have made for a high school in Denmark. It covers the four walls of the school’s canteen. Cut out on wooden wall panels, the motif is a map of the position of the stars over the high school on the opening day in 2010. The star formations are accompanied with titles, which are places – from literature, film, music, art, philosophy, and science; works that the students may encounter during their time at the school.

My public commission Atlas of Anatomy (2013) is created for an educational institution in Denmark that houses nursing, teaching, physiotherapy, social education, and social work programs. Silkscreened on 3,000 square feet of inner glass walls, the work consists of 15 photographs of body parts of people in different ages and a cut-up text composed of 133 medical, philosophical, and literary quotes about the body. Many of the quotes were culled from the library of the institution whose educational programs, to a large degree, deal with various aspects of the human body. I think of the commission as an abstract interpretation of the historical anatomical reference book, a journey through a collective body composed of many bodies and voices.

You mentioned that these mnemonic texts (acronyms which take the initial letter of each list item to create a memorable phrase) were created by the students. How did you get them to participate?

I was in dialog with the (now former) principal who gathered a group of students who were interested in participating. I gave them the guidelines for constructing the sentences which they then wrote.

Were you surprised by the responses you received? Do you have any favorites?

It was so exciting receiving the texts from the students. I love the fact that they have used language that I would never have come up with: Nutella Sandwiches and Ninjas, and names such as Mei and Ming – representative of the demographics of the school, which has many Mandarin speaking students.

What other surprises did you encounter in the design process?

The typographic aspect of the work was developed in collaboration with Denmark-based graphic designer Anni’s. We decided to work with the format of the writing exercise book and to think of the two walls where the texts are placed as pages in an open book. The letters of the mnemonics were placed on lines alluding to the exercise book format (and making the installation process more simple). At the end of the last text block there are some empty lines – a built in invitation to continue constructing new sentences. The work combines a scientific model (the solar system) and the imaginative universes of the children (the texts). I think of the model as a motor in a machine that can continue producing texts. And I see the students’ texts as a kind of conceptual poetry (constraint-based writing).

The work invites students to interact with it, to come up with their own mnemonics. Does all of your work entail collaboration or a back and forth of sorts?

Conversations (that be with experts in a given field, an art work, or, as here, a group of students) are always an important part of my working process. In the three public commissions I have made for educational institutions, I have invited people to contribute with textual material: For Atlas of Anatomy I made a “call for quotes” and for Journey to the End of the Night a lot of people helped me gather titles. I think of these works as cacophonic and therefore I also like the working process to have a collective aspect.

A big difference between an art work in a white cube setting and in a public commission is that the audience of the latter lives with the work for a long period of time. I, therefore, like to include an element in the public commissions that can unfold or be discovered over time (such as The Planets built in invitation to make up new sentences).

What was the most interesting aspect of working on this project?

Involving the students and receiving their texts. Developing a work for this specific context taking the educational setting and the audience (students and teachers) into account. And seeing the work transform from a 3D model to an actual physical work. After 3 years of preparation and fabrication it was stunning to enter the school lobby last week and see the work installed, finally.

What’s next?

My next project, I Imagined That Things Were Speaking, is a solo show at MSU Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb opening in October 2016. It will consist of a show inside the museum and a large projection on the façade of the museum building. All the exhibited works are photographic “readings” of various cityscapes through objects, plants, animals, and architectural components. The exhibition will thus both address a bypassing audience in the street and a museum audience. I am currently thinking a lot about composing the exhibition, so that it can speak to these different viewers with their different attention spans.

To see more of Nanna’s work, visit her website.

the-planets_text
Mnemonic text cut by our CNC machine

Steel planets orbiting in the shop
The planets in the shop before they begin their orbit

the-planets_arms
The arms are inspected after welding

Beautiful powder coating!
Planets post powder coating

Artist Nanna Debois Buhl watches as the work is installed
Artist Nanna Debois Buhl watches as the work is installed

Installation in process
In the beginning, there was only Neptune

Lobby view
View of The Planets from the lobby entrance

 

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A New Sculpture in Stamford

After talking to several metal shops, Louis Gesualdi decided he needed someone special to fabricate a large steel sculpture for one of his clients. The president of Stamford, CT-based Gesualdi Construction reached out to New Project after checking out our website and finding precisely what he was looking for. Gesualdi was working on Synchrony Financial’s corporate headquarters in Stamford, CT where the firm had engaged artist William C. Seepaul Jr. to create a large sculpture for its corporate campus. Seepaul had translated the consumer financial services company’s minimalist logo into three dimensions, enlivening it with a dynamic ribbon spiraling around bright yellow columns.

When asked about the design, Seepaul stated, “the idea was to create a sculpture that would embody the philosophy of what Synchrony Financial represents. The ribbon is an element that I introduced to illustrate movement. The rising form shows the upward path, an ever moving body that can adapt, yet remain strong, hence the material (steel). The ribbon is a visual representation of musical notation, symphonic harmony, elegance and balance that can be as subtle and simple as it is complex.”

The work, entitled Symphony, was Seepaul’s first large-scale public sculpture. “The mere fact that this sculpture was to be installed in a public place meant that a highly-skilled team of fabricators had to translate the engineering plans and make a tangible, beautiful, and sound piece,” said Seepaul. “There were over 25 sections to the ribbon that had multiplanar curves that had to be painstakingly welded by New Project.  This was in addition to New Project fabricating the columns, and the support lattice as well as finishing, prep, and painting then ultimately installing. Excellent work!”

Gesualdi Construction gave New Project approximately 4 months to translate Seepaul’s watercolor renderings and engineering drawings into a full-fledged steel sculpture to be installed at a June ceremony on Synchrony Financial’s corporate campus. After the steel was precisely cut, the pieces comprising the ribbon were rolled into shape and the entire sculpture was assembled, welded, and painted. We then transported the 17-foot tall sculpture to the site where, over the course of two days, we bolted the piece to its concrete foundation, welded the spiral segment to the sculpture’s columns, and made final surface touch ups to ensure a pristine finish.

Louis Gesualdi was pleased with the results. “It’s fantastic! It came out better than great!” the contractor stated when asked how the piece was ultimately received. In addition to the final fabrication of the sculpture, Gesualdi was responsible for the redesign and rebranding of three large building on Synchrony’s campus, juggling multiple details in a fast-paced environment. Having worked with artists before, Gesualdi had previously overseen the fabrication of outdoor sculpture, although nothing quite as challenging as Symphony. “Everyone was exhaling, glad that it all went well,” remarked Gesualdi.

Symphony sculpture rendering by Artist William Seepaul Jr.

Rendering of Symphony sculpture by artist William Seepaul Jr.

I-beams are welded in the shop to form the base for the sculpture.

I-beams are welded to create the sculpture’s base.

Brett welds from his perch in the shop.

Brett welds the sculpture from his perch.

The sculpture is primed in the shop before being painted.

The sculpture is primed before painting.

The spiral is test-fitted on to the columns before all components are welded together.

The spiral is test-fitted to before welding the components together.

Careful measurements are made to perfectly align the spiral components.

Meticulous measurements are made to ensure perfect alignment of the spiral segments.

Kelly grinding the weld to give a clean edge to the spiral.

Kelly grinds the welds to give the spiral a clean edge.

The sculpture is crated for protection after receiving its final coat of paint.

The columns are crated to protect the finish after painting.

Pino supervises as the sculpture is loaded onto the truck.

Pino supervises as the sculpture is loaded onto the truck.

The sculpture is crated and ready for transport to Stamford for installation.

The sculpture is loaded and ready for transport to its permanent home in Stamford.

Brett ensures the welds are perfect as the sculpture is installed on site in Stamford.

Brett touches up the welds during installation.

SYMPHONY-0034 image by W Seepaul

The final installation and a pristine finish. Photo by William Seepaul Jr.

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Checking in with Designer Scott Henderson

 

Scott Henderson is a Brooklyn-based designer, founder of design studio Scott Henderson, Inc., and co-founder of the design collective MINT. Scott’s work—from housewares to consumer electronics to furniture—has been shown in numerous exhibitions such as the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum’s National Design Triennial and is featured in more than 350 retailers and museums around the world. His work has also been included in The New York Times Magazine, I.D. Magazine’s Annual Design Review, and other prestigious publications.

Henderson’s Slat Chair, above, was prototyped by New Project and debuted at the ICFF in 2011. With ICFF returning to the Javits Center in 2 weeks, we decided to check in with Scott to see what he’s been up to lately.

NP:  You’ve designed all sorts of products—from thermometers to furniture to yachts.  What would be your dream design job?

SH:  It would be fun to do something really big—like be on a team to figure out how to harness ocean waves to convert them into energy, or something like that.  How about a huge terrarium that creates drinking water in arid developing countries?

NP:  That does sound huge!  Since you’re all about the “big idea,” what “big ideas” do you see changing or reshaping your industry?

SH:  The Digital Revolution.  Even though that kind of design work is different from my kind of design, the trend is all about the decimation of the physical.  The biggest taxi company owns no taxis (Uber), the biggest movie house has no cinemas (Netflix), the biggest accommodations provider owns no real estate (Airbnb).  There are also fewer real stores to buy things in, so instead of seeing and touching a real product, you are buying it based on an online thumbnail image.  It’s hard to tell if a design is good or not with only that level of detail, so it makes sense that the importance of [physical] design is therefore diminished, and price competition once again becomes the sole driver of sales. This has reshaped my industry recently in that design now has to offer only what people deem as essential.  Millennials don’t want things—they actually hate stuff.  The age of the design knickknack is dead, and talking about emotion in design is yesterday’s pitch. Design now has to be about the essential. The trend is a return to problem solving and meaningful innovation.

NP:  You run your own successful design studio and have developed your own brands, create your own artwork, have served as chairman of IDSA’s national conference…how do you make time to stay inspired and continue to generate new ideas?

SH:  After a while it just becomes a part of who you are and no longer a job.   As I tell my clients, Scott Henderson Inc. never closes.

NP:  Does your design work come from a solitary or a collaborative process? Or a little of both? How do you like to work?

SH:  A little of both.  I involve my clients as my core team members.  Or if I am doing a “Scott” product, I’ll reach out to buyers and consumers.  I’m a sponge for input—I am always listening and watching. I even sleep with one eye open.

NP: Can you tell us what you’re working on now?

SH:  I’m developing new “Scott” products: a consumer electronics gizmo, some cookware, and some baby gear.

You can see more of Scott’s work on his website here.
And look for him out and about during ICFF and NYCxDESIGN events.

Scott Henderson’s Slat Chair, designed using the forces of tension and compression, was fabricated from molded aircraft grade birch veneer and two simple polished stainless steel rods. Check out the images below to see how New Project created the prototype of Scott’s chair in our shop.

SlatChair_Dennis
Dennis contemplates the tension

SlatChair_seat
Ivar shaping the seat

SlatChair_Scott
Tom threading the slats

SlatChair_assembly
Ivar assembling the pieces

SlatChair_finished
Voila–the final product!

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Goldman Sachs Graduate, Dennis Potami

NEW PROJECT ENTERS THE ALUMNI RANKS OF THE GOLDMAN SACHS 10K SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAM

New Project’s Dennis Potami Graduates from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program


 

10KSB Alumni

 

We are excited to announce that New Project’s co-founder and co-CEO, Dennis Potami, has recently graduated from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Initiative! In October 2014, Dennis was one of 28 small business owners throughout the New York tri-state area selected to participate in the 13th cohort of the prestigious business leadership program.

In the United States, the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business program is a $500 million investment to help entrepreneurs create jobs and economic opportunity by providing them with greater access to education, financial capital, and business support services. Over the last sixteen weeks, advisors have helped Dennis and his classmates identify potential business growth opportunities and have provided them with the framework and training to assist in reaching those goals. The intensive program allowed Dennis to work one-on-one with dedicated professionals to develop a strategic and tailored growth plan for New Project.

Dennis had the following to say about his participation and graduation from the Goldman Sachs program:

Being a small business owner can sometimes feel like you are on an island of your own. The Goldman Sachs program provides an invaluable opportunity to be a part of a network of committed professionals. I feel honored to have been selected to participate in this program where I have learned targeted strategies to help grow our business.

After sixteen weeks of intense training, New Project has entered the alumni ranks of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Initiative!

Great Job, Dennis!!

think & build

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