The main highlight on the Sunday was the presentation of the “gardiente Outdoor Living Awards”. Around half of all exhibitors had entered their innovations from the fields of garden furniture, sun shades, BBQs, textiles and accessories for a chance to win this coveted accolade.
Aesthetics, design, innovation, functionality and sustainability were assessed. The jury of experts made a pre-selection of all entries, which were presented in the TrendArea during the gardiente.
Photo: © Simon Veith – nachhaltige Fotografie
Coming in third place last year, this time round Italian furniture manufacturer Nardi clinched the Gold Award for its modular outdoor lounge “Komodo”.
This innovative set had already caused quite a sensation at the Milan furniture fair, impressing visitors with its functionality and versatility. “Komodo comprises three elements, which can transform in a few simple steps from an armchair into a table or an entire lounge. The back and arm rests are easy to click into place, making it an incredibly flexible system. The polypropylene can be completely recycled and, around 15 to 20 years after being used in the furniture for the first time, it can be transformed into new furniture or other products,” explains Stefan Pfaff of Nardi. Managing Director Anna Nardi travelled especially to gardiente to receive the award.
The Outdoor Living Award in Silver went to the multi-functional “Premium Sunshade Pendel” from Doppler/Knirps, a product characterised by functionality and ease of use.
Jürgen Schmeller, Doppler, commented: “Light weight, quality and easy handling were among the main priorities in designing our Premium Sunshade Pendel. We’re really proud of it.”
The Bronze Award was presented to the “Cube” fire basket from höfats.
Highlighting the attributes of this product, Rainer Danner, höfats, explained: “If you want to stifle the fire, you simply turn the Cube over – obeying the laws of gravity, the fire tray always remains level. When the “Cube” isn’t on fire, it can be used as a stool or a side table – it’s a really versatile and useful piece of outdoor furniture. Also, in the age of e-commerce, the cube can easily be packaged and sent by post.”
In addition to the official prize winners, the jury of experts also issued “honorary commendations” for the “Antibes” chair series from ScanCom and the “Circus” side table made from recycled teak by Jan Kurtz.
These are the nominees with their innovations from the fields of garden furniture, parasols, BBQ, textiles and accessories:
Amazonas, Doppler/Knirps, Jan Kurtz, Hartman, H. Gautzsch/Siena Garden, höfats, Karasek, Nardi, Scancom, Stern, Weber and Zebra.
Our expert jurors
Prof. Auwi Stübbe
Chairman of the regional design forum Coburger Designforum Oberfranken e. V.
Prof. Auwi Stübbe is one of the trailblazers that turned Coburg into an important design location. The trained master carpenter studied architecture and interior design in Stuttgart. He then worked for the architect’s office Prof. Heinle & Wischer and was involved in the foundation of Magazin GmbH in 1972, subsequently accepting a Professorship at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences in 1982. He was dean for many years and was instrumental in establishing a degree course in design. In collaboration with his colleagues, he adopted and implemented an idea tabled by Coburg’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce to stage design events in the city. This gave rise in 1988/89 to the Coburg Design Days, which continue to shape his work to this day. He is currently Chairman of the regional design forum Coburger Designforum Oberfranken e. V., of which he was one of the co-founders in 2001.
Helmut »Max« Merkel
The journalist Helmut “Max” Merkel has been specialising in the furniture sector since 1982. In 1988, he started working for the German furniture trade magazine MÖBELMARKT. From 1992 to 1999, he was co-owner of a PR agency for furniture manufacturers, buying groups and furniture retailers. He then returned to MÖBELMARKT as editor-in-chief (international). In 2008, he also assumed the role of CEO for CRP Consulting Ritthammer & Partners, a service and consulting company specialising in the international furniture sector.
Prof. Jan Armgardt
Jan Armgardt Design, Schondorf
Born in 1947, Jan Armgardt lives and works in Schondorf by Lake Ammersee. He looks back, among others, on an apprenticeship as a furniture maker, a degree in architecture and interior design and a traineeship with a furniture store. He founded his own furniture design studio and various small mail order companies for furniture. He has also held numerous exhibitions both in Germany and abroad as well as workshops at universities in Germany, the Philippines (2006) and Turkey (2007 | 2008 | 2010). Jan Armgardt has taught at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences and the Staatliche Korbfachschule in Lichtenfels and is currently a professor at the Aachen University of Applied Sciences. The designer has received more than 40 international awards for a diversity of products and has extensive experience as a jury member.
publisher of the special interest title InteriorFashion
Born in 1971, Bianca Schmidt studied Business Administration at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences. She more or less stumbled into journalism which soon proved to be her true vocation. After 15 years as an editor with the German trade magazine MÖBELMARKT, she decided to become self-employed at the beginning of 2016. She now publishes the special interest title InteriorFashion which focuses on high-end furnishings in the private and contract business sectors and primarily targets interior designers, furnishing contractors and high-end furniture stores involved in interior planning and design.
press spokeswoman German wood industry’s umbrella association
Ursula Geismann studied economics, politics and sociology in Mainz and Hamburg. After completing her degree, she took up a position as head of market analysis and statistics for a market research and polling institute in Cologne where she worked for several years. In January 1997, she assumed a new role with the German wood, furniture and prefab industry associations in Bad Honnef (Verbände der Deutschen Holz-, Möbel- und Fertigbauindustrie). Whilst fulfilling her role as press officer, she observes and analyses architectural and design developments in construction, interior design and furniture. Looking after the export activities of the German wood industry’s umbrella association Hauptverband der deutschen Holzindustrie, she attends construction, supplier and furniture trade fairs all over the world.
Here you can have a look at the emotional award ceremony of the gardiente 2017.