World-renowned Kenneth Cobonpue bagged another international honor this week in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The Cebuano furniture designer’s Peacock Easy Chair, one of his newest designs, won over hundreds of entries for the Individual Seating Lounge category at the 22nd Annual IIDA/HD Product Design Competition.
Cobonpue is the first Filipino designer to receive the award.
The prestigious design award is given by the United States-based International Interior Design Association (IIDA) and Hospitality Design magazine. Winners were announced earlier this week at the HD Expo, a hospitality design fair at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Cobonpue’s American partner received the award on his behalf.
Cobonpue, who has won several awards in his illustrious career, expressed his thrill in a phone interview with Lifestyle. Winning, it seems, never gets old.
“We have been nominated, but we’ve never won,” Cobonpue said. “There are awards where you apply [for consideration]. But we haven’t really done much of that because it takes a lot of your time, and there are hundreds of entries from all over the world. We’re very happy that the jurors picked our entry.”
Tall, swirling back
Cobonbue’s Peacock Easy Chair is a modern take on the traditional wicker chair, and features a tall, swirling back akin to the magnificent bird’s long tail feather. Bent wicker mimicking the peacock’s feather pattern—in cobalt, teal and natural, or in natural and black—adorns the chair’s back. The Las Vegas award was the first for the Peacock.
According to the Hospitality Design website, winners were chosen “based on innovation, technical advancements, cost efficiency, environmental consciousness, aesthetics, client-user benefits, and need and usage in the hospitality industry.” Design industry professionals made up the judging panel.
Cobonpue is a regular participant of furniture and product design fairs in the United States, which, he said, is “more open to new or unknown designers, compared to Europe, where you have to have an established brand and heritage.”
“In the United States, it’s fair game,” he said.
Just last month, his popular Chiquita chair graced the cover of the 2018 High Point Market Resource Guide, with the rest of his collection featured in its pages. High Point Market, held in North Carolina, is the largest furnishings industry trade show in the world.