Kohler Celebrates 150 Years of Bold Moves, Creativity and Impact
January 26, 2023
Kohler Co., founded in 1873, has forged a legacy of creating industry-transforming innovations for kitchen and bath spaces, energy resiliency products, luxury hospitality experiences, and major championship golf. Creativity and leading-edge design are the heart and soul of the KOHLER brand ethos and mission of gracious living.
Kohler’s teams of bold creators around the world are the foundation of the iconic KOHLER brand, along with consumers and trade communities who bring the company’s products to life in creative and artistic ways. As the firm embarks on its 150th anniversary, the global organization invites all associates, partners and customers to participate in the celebration through a series of special events and activations around the world, including limited-edition product releases, commemorative apparel, and storytelling through digital content – all captured under the anniversary theme of “Come All Creators”.
“Bold moves and an entrepreneurial spirit are in our DNA and have deep meaning within our organization – starting with our founder John Michael Kohler who formed our company in Wisconsin together with an immigrant workforce creating new and better lives for their families,” said chair and CEO David Kohler, the fourth generation of Kohler family leadership, and only the ninth person to lead the company. “As we celebrate our 150 years of achievements, learnings and growth, we encourage all passionate creators to join our pursuit of continuous improvement in providing gracious living for future generations through better design, innovation, wellness and sustainability.”
“The ingenuity and passion of our associates and customers are the catalysts to creating new ideas, effective partnerships, and a better world for future generations,” said chief sustainability and DEI officer, Laura Kohler. “Looking back on Kohler’s many pioneering milestones inspires us to look forward and create new avenues to improve our planet, our lives and communities – one idea, one product, one partnership, one act of impact at a time.”
Throughout the year-long celebration of Come All Creators, the company will pay homage to its unique 150-year heritage while looking ahead to an innovative future joined by valued partners, talented artists and explorers. To help bring the initiative to life, Kohler Co. partnered with American artist and innovator Daniel Arsham to conceive the commemorative 150th anniversary creative identity through logos and marks, typography and lettering to meld the company’s storied heritage with its “leading boldly” approach to the future. Kohler previously collaborated with Arsham on Rock.01 an exclusive 3D-printed sink, and ‘Divided Layers’, a globally acclaimed installation featured in 2022 at Milan Design Week.
2023 “Come All Creators” Initiatives include:
KOHLER Heritage Colors Product Launch
Kohler will launch some of the company’s most iconic and best-selling designs in two signature Heritage Colors to be announced this spring, and available for purchase in summer of 2023. Kohler’s introduction of vibrant, colorful products was received with great acclaim in 1927 and remains an innovative movement within the company’s design leadership today.
Heritage Colors Pop-up Events in New York City
On Friday, January 27, the Heritage Colors pop-up truck will be in Union Square on the north-west corner at E 17th & Broadway from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. KidSuper founder Colm Dillane, a visionary in the world of fashion with a fearless approach to design and unexpected use of bold and vibrant color, will be onsite at 10:00 a.m. greeting guests with his limited edition KidSuper x Kohler Original Recipe Chocolates in Heritage Colors.
Kohler Home Generators with Color and Pattern Options
Celebrating its longstanding leadership within color innovation, Kohler expands its home generator offering to include 10 new exclusive colors and 3 Mossy Oak camouflage pattern options, along with the popular cashmere color. KOHLER colors and patterns help homeowners make their standby generator complement the aesthetic of their home or stand out to make a statement. KOHLER home generators run automatically, connected to a home’s fuel sources (natural gas or propane), providing hassle-free peace of mind during an outage, adding to the overall sense of wellbeing in the home.
KOHLER x Robert Swan
Modern day explorer Robert Swan, the only person to walk to both the North and South poles, partnered with Kohler on his successful Undaunted Expedition across the Antarctic landmass. Swan reached the Geographic South Pole on January 10, 2023, relying solely on KOHLER renewable energy solutions. Swan’s trek pays tribute to Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd, aviator and the first polar explorer to walk to Antarctica in 1929, who also relied exclusively on KOHLER generators to power his journey.
“Toilet in the Road” Campaign
In the early 1970s, Herb Kohler, long-time company leader and innovator, created a force with THE BOLD LOOK OF KOHLER that transformed the American bathroom from a utilitarian space into one of design, style, sophistication and craftsmanship. His provocative advertising campaigns challenged conventional norms and targeted consumers directly verses the industry practice of targeting professionals and distributors. One of the most iconic ads from the 1980s came to be known as “the toilet in the road” and the company plans to reprise that ad in 2023 with breakthrough imagery and video featuring its award-winning Numi smart toilet.
Global Market Events
Several other 150th anniversary activations and events are planned across the globe over the next year at KOHLER Experience Centers, Kohler Signature Stores and at various trade shows and events in 2023 including: Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, CONEXPO, Design Shanghai, Milan Design Week, Design Miami/, Kohler Wellness Retreats and Kohler Food & Wine to name several. The company is also planning celebrations with its associates – past and present – and a communitywide celebration in the Village of Kohler, the company’s global headquarters.
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