At NYC’s Spring Market 2019, Designers Learn Art of Tech Concealment
L. to r.: Bryan Celli, Crestron’s senior design showroom manager; Elizabeth Goldfeder, Reflectel’s CEO; Michelle Guss, Crestron’s senior manager for residential business development; and JoAnn Arcenal, CTS, DSCE, Crestron’s market development manager, near a Reflectel mirror TV displaying digital art
Spring Market 2019, a daylong event that drew designers and architects to seminar programs in several spaces within the multi-story Decoration & Design Building in New York City last week, featured a talk at Crestron’s showroom that proved to be an eye-opener for designers eager to learn about fitting technology into their projects. Entitled “The Art of Hiding Technology,” its premise was to educate the packed house on the many ways to reconcile their clients’ desire for top-level automation and control without compromising a home’s looks.
Noting the undeniable fact that home technology adoption rates have skyrocketed, presenter Michelle Guss, senior manager for residential business development at Crestron, put up a slide of a pristine living room with the superimposed question, ‘Have you ever Photoshopped technology out of your product portfolio?’
“Your clients are using technology,” she reminded the audience, “and you need to understand what’s available and what will integrate seamlessly, keeping your design aesthetic.”
Guss proceeded to discuss how it could be hidden through safe and convenient methods. In presenting a myriad of video, audio, networking, security and climate control solutions that could easily be “stealthed,” she also delved into how designers could work more effectively with tech pros - which she referenced as “interior technology designers” - to achieve the desired design aesthetic. “That term,” she says, “is a way to help interior designers connect with what an A/V integrator does,” making it easier for them to relate – and to collaborate more closely – and much earlier – in the design process.
Crestron’s Celli observes as Reflectel’s Goldfeder presents to designers in attendance on the art of TV concealment
A focal point of the presentation was the art of television concealment, a discussion led by Elizabeth Goldfeder, CEO of Reflectel, a company that designs and sells customized mirror TVs – flat-panel TVs that double as beautifully framed mirrors when they are off.
Her product, she says, is “all about how concealed technology works in the design scheme – it forges a bridge between design and technology.”
Basalte’s Julien Lemey, business development manager/New York, holds a selection of Basalte keypad designs that are shown as options at the Crestron showroom
She told the group, “I’ve found, from the design side, that you need a good A/V integrator on your job - one who will teach you, one who has resources and is reliable, and one who can be counted on to make things run. These A/V guys are just like a good internist – they are the nerve center for technology.”
Goldfeder noted to us that the post-presentation questions she fielded at this event were typical at designer presentations, including worries over TV glare ruining a room’s aesthetic. She explains that her mirror TVs are designed for specific applications to provide “aesthetics and functionality. When these TVs are not being used as TVs, the mirror gives them functionality. It’s form and function combined – the best of both worlds.”