Thirteenth Annual Contract Design Forum Held in Santa Fe, New Mexico

The 13th Annual Contract Design Forum—a two-day gathering of the 40-member Contract Editorial Advisory Board, invited guests who are leaders in the commercial design industry, and representatives of sponsors—was held last week at La Fonda on the Plaza in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Fostering engaging and thought-provoking discussion, the Forum is held annually for leading experts in commercial architecture and interior design—architects and designers who are principals of firms, and nationally recognized designers of workplace, hospitality, healthcare, retail, education, and civic projects, as well as design educators and national real estate leaders.

SITE Santa Fe—a contemporary art space with a brand new building by SHoP Architects. Photo by Murrye Bernard

Salsa making at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. Photo by Murrye Bernard

This year’s forum kicked off with salsa making in teams at the Santa Fe School of Cooking, and included visits to the Museum of International Folk Art to learn about Alexander Girard’s folk art collection and SITE Santa Fe—a contemporary art space with a brand new building by SHoP Architects.

Attendees enjoying views of Santa Fe from Eloisa. Photo by Murrye Bernard

Dinners were enjoyed at Eloisa, which was a nominee for the James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant in 2016 and The Compound, a restaurant with a rich 50-year history that was designed by Alexander Girard.

Artifacts collected by Alexander Girard that inspired his textile designs for Herman Miller were on view at the Museum of International Folk Art . Photo by Murrye Bernard

This year’s speakers were Andrew Gordon, Ellen Dunham-Jones, and Jason Schupbach. Gordon, directing animator at Pixar Animation Studios, delivered a talk about creativity and storytelling, while Dunham-Jones—a leading authority on retrofitting suburbia—spoke about her authoritative book on the subject “Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs.” Schupbach is the director of The Design School at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University and discussed his seven years as the director of design and creative place-making programs for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

Editor in Chief John Czarnecki leads an informal discussion with speaker Ellen Dunham-Jones during lunch. Photo by Murrye Bernard

Contract Design Forum was sponsored by Bentley, Crossville, Davis, Humanscale, Keilhauer, Kimball, Kwalu, Mohawk Group, OFS, Shaw Contract, Sunbrella, Tarkett, Teknion, Universal Fibers, and Wolf-Gordon.

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