The Art Dubai Group has announced the region’s first collectible design fair, Design Days Dubai (which took place annually in March as part of Art Week), has been reformed and will now play a key role within Downtown Design, during Dubai Design Week, in November.
The fair has been rebranded to Downtown Editions, and will ‘build on the legacy of the city’s first collectible design fair’, evolving into a curated exhibition within the Downtown Design brand. It will showcase bespoke design, capsule collections, individual studios, and designer collaborations.
“Aligning our design events in the same week in November will give individual designers, galleries and craft associations greater exposure to the regional design audience. They will now have access to the commercial platform of Downtown Design, which will broaden their association with trade buyers, facilitate meaningful dialogue about their work, incentivise commissions, and ultimately will expand their opportunities to sell their work,” Rue Kothari, fair director of Downtown Design, told designMENA.
“It will also diversify the overall content that we present as part of Downtown Design, in line with what our visitors are telling us they want to see. It will create a comprehensive and significant showcase of the quality and diversity of the regional design industry,” she said.
Kothari explained that Downtown Editions will also possess a strong focus on creativity from the region, helping to connect emerging designers with manufactures and international brands.
“Over the past six years Design Days Dubai had changed and broadened its content beyond just collectible pieces, in response to what buyers were looking for. Downtown Editions will evolve the concept again, with an even tighter curation,” she said.
“There will still be gallery presence for collectible pieces – and we hope to continue our relationship with the galleries long into the future – to be joined by individual designers, up and coming studios, design collectives, craft associations and installation pieces.”
Kothari added that although Downtown Editions will be showcased as part of Downtown Design, the exhibition will have its own “look, feel and personality” and will be continue being dedicated to limited-edition design.
Benedict Floyd, CEO and co-founder of the Art Dubai Group that owns and manages Downtown Design, said: “Our design fairs are where commerce and creativity come together and uniting the two successful exhibitions into one event is a natural progression and will provide an enhanced platform for exhibitors as well as visitors and further broaden the programme of Dubai Design Week, which in just three years has become the largest creative festival in the region.”
Downtown Design, and now Downtown Editions, will once again take place at its custom-built venue on the d3 waterfront.
The creatives and galleries presented under Downtown Editions are yet to be announced.
Last year’s Dubai Design Week included a number of creatives from the region and abroad, with one of the highlights being Fahed + Architects recycled Abwab pavilion in collaboration with Bee’ah.
The design event also include installations by designers including London-based Fredrikson Stallard, who unveiled a large-scale sculpture for Swarovski, made up of 8,000 topaz-colored crystals.
Collaborations between regional designers and international brands were also seen at the fair, such as Emirati designer Khalid Shafar’s lighting sculpture for Czech manufacturer Lasvit, expressing a symbiosis of art and religion.
All images courtesy of Downtown Design.