Roche Bobois worldwide


February 2018

The “Cairn” stone chair designed by Weiran Chen and George Plionis of Parsons’ MF


Roche Bobois announced the winners of the 2017 Roche Bobois Design Award in partnership with New York’s Parsons School of Design.

As part of its 5th edition, Roche Bobois invited 16 teams of 2 students from Parsons’ MFA Industrial Design and BFA Product Design programs to take up the challenge of designing and prototyping functional, full-scale furniture driven by the theme “Seating for Eating.”

Final concepts were presented on December 12th to a selection panel comprised of  Gilles Bonan - Roche Bobois’ CEO;  Nicolas Roche – Roche Bobois’ Creative Director;  Jennifer Barre, Roche Bobois’ Marketing Director of North America;  Robert Kirkbride - Dean of Parsons’ School of Constructed Environments;  Barry Richards – Rockwell Group Principal and Studio Leader and Stephen Burks – winner of the 2015 National Design Award in product design and designer of the Roche Bobois Traveler collection. 

As a result, two first place winners were selected:

The “Cairn” stone chair designed by Weiran Chen and George Plionis of Parsons’ MFA Industrial Design program

The “Plus One” extendable chair designed by Lorraine Chen and Po Yuan Wang of Parsons’ BFA Product Design program. 

Second place was awarded to Liujingzi Jiang and Lee Chi-Hao of Parsons’ MFA Industrial Design program for the “Asy” yellow asymmetrical chair.

Rather than award first through third place as originally planned, the judges decided on two first place winners as each of the projects best addressed different aspects of the original brief and key judging criteria. “One is an extremely innovative concept, elegantly designed and technically well thought out: a‘2-in-1’ extendable chair, which has never been seen before. The other offers a particularly poetic context with visual strength in line with our brand, and the exceptional level of the prototype was quite convincing,” says Nicolas Roche. “The third design is light and striking while addressing the new postures that come with modern dining.”

All three winning projects will be prototyped in Europe and potentially manufactured for retail in Roche Bobois’ worldwide network as part of the brand’s Fall-Winter 2018 Collection. All 16 designs will also be featured in an exhibition during NYCxDesign Week in the brand’s Madison Avenue flagship showroom.