Downtown Design, organized by the Art Dubai and Design Days Dubai team is the latest event on Dubai's social and cultural calendar. An exclusive high-end design trade fair that will be exhibiting select quality brands, products, trends and concepts. Participants will also engage in talks, workshops and seminars related to design. The audience will get an insight into the history and making of various different cutting-edgy technology and brands. Renowned designers like Ora Ito,Ludovica+Roberto Palomba and Pauline Deltour will also be attending and will talk about their vision. There will also be discussions between CEOs of leading real estate developments and distribution agencies in context to the regional market.
Khaleejesque recently chatted with Cristina Romelli Gervasoni, the Fair Director to get an insight into Downtown Design.
What is the concept behind Downtown Design and how did this idea come about?
Downtown Design will bring together a selection of international design brands renowned for their quality products and focus on manufacturing craftsmanship. Held in a unique venue at the foot of the Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai, the fair will not only showcase design from some of the world's top brands such as Vitra and Poltrona Frau, there will also be special installations such as Temporary Museum of Milano, one of the main highlights of the Milan Design Week, that has never exhibited outside Milan. In fact, the fair will bring several brands to the Middle East for the first time.
There is also an extensive programme that will allow visitors to meet some of the world's leading designers; understand about the latest developments in the industry from CEOs of the region's top property and distribution companies; and learn in detail about the production of design from the exhibiting brands.
Who has this event been curated for and will it be open to the public?
The fair is aimed at those with in an interest in design. Primarily it is focused as a business platform where trade visitors will see the latest design concepts and products from around the world and interact with key figures connected to the industry in an environment never experienced before in the region. The event will be free for trade visitors and industry professionals between 12pm and 5pm daily, it will also be open to members of the public from 5pm to 8pm on 29-31st October and 12pm-6pm on Friday 1st November.
What can we expect at the event-tell us about some of the highlights of the exhibition that we should definitely check?
Visitors will see international design brands renowned for their quality, craftsmanship and attention to detail exhibiting for the first time all together in Dubai. Those passionate about design will have the opportunity to discover new brands who are debuting in the Middle East for the first time at Downtown Design. Moreover the trade professionals will have the chance to liaise with the owners and the top management of companies coming to Dubai to meet the trade professionals.
How is Downtown Design different from Design Days the well-established annual design event?
Downtown Design is a trade fair aimed at global design brands who want to connect with and sell product to design industry professionals across the region. Design Days Dubai is a fair aimed at those interested in collecting one off design pieces, showcasing through design galleries.
How many exhibitors will be participating in the event and can we expect to see a lot of regional talent?
We will have 40 brands exhibiting including some of the most iconic names in the design industry such as Cassina, Vitra, Poltrona Frau, Preciosa, Emeco and many more. In terms of regional talent, Atelier AK will present a great new project to launch on an international audience.
What is the selection criteria and policy for the participants?
We have selected companies belonging to the furniture, lighting, flooring, textile, accessories segments. The focus has been on brands renowned for their quality products.
What are the other panels, seminars and other events planned during the exhibition?
Downtown Design has a packed programme with more than 30 talks and seminars that will take place on site. There will be a daily series of talks from the exhibiting brands that will reveal the stories behind the products, bringing them to life and underlining their importance on a global stage. We have world-famous designers such as Ora Ito, Ludovica+Roberto Palomba and Pauline Deltour, Giulio Cappellini confirmed to speak at the fair.
As the Fair Director, what has been your biggest task and your biggest challenge?
My biggest task has been having the most renowned brands in the segment exhibiting together and the challenge is a new way of presenting and experiencing design.
Are there any particular pieces that you are personally looking forward to seeing?
Actually I am looking forward to seeing how companies will display the products in a creative atmosphere; some companies are producing pieces never seen before for Downtown Design and I am very curious to see them premiere at the fair!
For more information, visit www.downtowndesign.com