2017 CONNECT Finalists:  

William Ganis, Faculty and Chairperson, Department of Art & Design Indiana State University
Nora Halpern, Vice President of Leadership Alliances, Americans For The Arts
Eric Meek, Manager, Hot Glass Programs, Corning Museum of Glass
Nicholas Moriarty, Principal Interior Design Consultant, NMI, LLC
Maggie Reynolds, Senior Fine Art & Collections Specialist, Risk Consulting Group, Chubb Personal Risk Services

CONNECT 2017 Winners Purdue University
SOFA CHICAGO announces six of the top design universities in the country have been chosen to design unique installations for visitors to “connect” on the SOFA CHICAGO show floor at the annual CONNECT student design competition. Columbus College of Art & Design, MFA in Visual Arts: New Projects Program (Columbus, OH), Metropolitan State University of Denver, Department of Industrial Design (Denver, CO), Purdue University (West Lafayette, IN) School of the Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, IL), University of California | Davis (Davis, CA), and Herron School of Art & Design, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (Indianapolis, IN), have been chosen to participate in the 2017 edition of CONNECT.

“We have an exciting roster of prestigious universities participating in CONNECT this year, including the 2016 winner Purdue University,” said Donna Davies, Vice President, Art Group, Urban Expositions. “CONNECT is an incredible opportunity for these students to showcase their concepts in art and design, work cohesively as a team, and demonstrate the creativity of their respective university departments. We are always excited to see the CONNECT design environments come to life from their abstract proposals to their final spaces on the show floor.” 

Now in its fifth year, CONNECT highlights innovative design programs at universities throughout the country. Students, under the supervision of university faculty, have the opportunity to design environments that incorporate seating and lighting installations, with the intention of offering an intimate area on the show floor where attendees can sit, relax and "connect." Exhibits will be located throughout the show floor, providing SOFA CHICAGO's international audience an opportunity to experience the innovation and creativity of future designers. 

The winning installation will be chosen by a jury of design professionals before the SOFA CHICAGO Opening Preview and will be awarded $3000 by Chubb Personal Risk Services, which is a returning sponsor of the fair for the thirteenth consecutive year. 

Special thanks to Chubb Personal Risk Services and the Corning Museum of Glass for their generous support of CONNECT.

Universities interested in participating in future CONNECT competitions at SOFA, please contact Emily Fenn | efenn@urban-expo.com

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