Perspective is everything—and sometimes, outside insight and inspiration is exactly what’s needed to help us see the bigger picture and think differently about the world around us. Our partnership with Gretchen Wagner gives us this guidance. A talented artist and expert colorist, Gretchen continues to work with the Bentley Design Studio team in ways that fuel our creativity, trigger new ideas and connects macro-influences with product design and development. It’s this unique approach that inspired our studio model and the creation of Modern Curator Collection No. 1.
We’ve also partnered with Gretchen to develop an updated trends forecast, a curation of four unique shifts that will impact commercial design in 2023-2024, in look, feel and practice. Each trend—Echo, Terra, Offset and Hack—is a celebration of our collective two-year pandemic journey; they embody where we’ve come from (moments of isolation, confusion and purposeful mark-making) and embrace where we’re going (inner evolution and growth, embraced authenticity and futuristic fantasies).
Take a closer look at our 2023-2024 trends.
Trend 1: Echo
Leave the overwhelming chaos of 2022 behind. Instead, Echo urges us to turn inward toward our subconscious for moments of tranquility and tactility.
In color, Echo is all about muted neutrals that help us find comfort in simplicity. In form, we’ll see shapes that are silky, smooth and curvilinear, raked with beautiful textures like subtle ridges and gentle waves.
Trend 2: Terra
Rooted in distorted, abstracted and asymmetrical forms, Terra abandons perfection in exchange for authenticity. It embraces elegant, earthy hues and pigments, featured on artisanal materials and construction—aiming to break down the formality of design. In doing so, Terra reveals architectural objects that appear almost unfinished, such as loose marks, and raw edges and hems.
Trend 3: Offset
Inspired by the resurgence of the 90s aesthetic, Offset is defined by youth and their relationship with media. It’s playful, collaborative and inclusive.
With Offset, we’ll see more saturated hues and complementary tones paired with bright neons that add candid color and optimism to design. Pattern repetition and mixing are also prominent.
Trend 4: Hack
Our fourth trend, Hack is defined by futurism and technology. While we continue to explore and design for digital landscapes-yes, event interiors in the Metaverse need to be well-designed-, it’s important to identify the aesthetic it inspires in our physical spaces. Here we see the influence of the dark and luminous colors we consume through our screens. We anticipate this Web 3.0-inspired trend manifesting itself in the form of minimal materials that are sleek, chrome-plated and metallic.
While these four design trends are all unique, they find common ground in optimism and authenticity, and remind us to find inspiration in our collective experiences. We’re excited to see how these trends continue to evolve and shape the A&D industry—in 2023 and beyond.
As a freelance multi-disciplinary artist, Gretchen Wagner systematically explores the unique qualities and interpretations of color in art and design. She continues to evolve her creative practice with studio GRETCHEN WAGNER, her independent studio in Atlanta, Georgia while pursuing her MFA in Painting at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).