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Brunswick takes a cue from students

Brunswick Billiards recently challenged graduate furniture design students at the Herron School of Design to “re-imagine” the company’s iconic Gold Crown pool table. And they had about eight weeks to do it.

The Gold Crown V looks pretty good in a finished game room.

Three finalists emerged: Shelley Spicuzza, a Master of Fine Arts candidate from Indianapolis; and recent graduates Sam Ladwig of Oklahoma and Colin Tury of Detroit. According to the company, they modernized the Gold Crown to appeal to today’s consumers.

The finalists presented their designs to Brunswick’s leadership in June and the winner will be announced this fall. First prize is a $2,500 award, along with the professional credit for creating the Gold Crown VI. The new table is scheduled to hit the market in late 2015.

“This project elevated the expectations of our students,” says Corey Robinson, associate professor of furniture design at Herron. “I was extremely happy with how they all applied their knowledge of materials, fabrications methods and design sensibilities to imagine and shape their presentations for the next generation of the Brunswick Gold Crown series pool table. I think Herron students again have proved that they are well-positioned to solve this type of challenge with the perspectives of being able to ideate, design, problem-solve and render their solutions to a real-world, client-driven problem.”

Brunswick says the goal of the program was to tap into new thinking for the next generation of customers.

“We are always looking at ways to blend craftsmanship and functionality in our tables,” Brunswick Billiards president Brent Hutton says. “I’ve seen the excellence of Herron students for years and knew they would be able to take our beloved Gold Crown into its sixth edition while maintaining the iconic attributes.”

To view a video about the Brunswick project, go to

This article originally appeared in the September 2014 issue.

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