Pay attention, designers and design aficionados. As global festival season approaches, cities around the world vie for top spot as design capital of the world. Here, we bring you six of the best design festivals from around the world that you should have on your itinerary, should you be lucky enough to be planning a trip abroad.
Helsinki Design Week ( September 1 – 11)
As the largest of its kind in the Nordics, the Helsinki Design Week (pictured top) is a multidisciplinary design festival that hosts close to 200 events throughout the week. Held with the aim of promoting emerging talent, trends and international design collaborations, the annual event has successfully seen crowds of up to 120,000 people turn up previously.
Paris Design Week (September 3 – 10)
This Paris-wide event – organized to overlap with Maison & Objet – holds events in more than 300 venues in five areas in the city. Seven countries will participate this year, namely China, Ukraine, Estonia, Finland, the Flanders region on Belgium, Czech Republic, Lithuania and Denmark. Expect a cultural mash-up of exhibitions, cocktails and promenades as different nationalities culminate in the French capital.
London Design Festival (September 17- 25)
Known for collaborating with museums and cultural centers in the city, London Design Festival is organised to promote the city as a creative hub and gateway to the world of design. Its “Landmark Projects” installations program, in particular, has seen some of the world’s best designers commission work for it, including Alex Chinneck’s “A Bullet from a Shooting Star” in 2015.
Vienna Design Week (September 30 – October 9)
For a design festival that draws crowds of over 360,000 visitors, it is no wonder Vienna Design Week is already into its ninth edition. The annual festival chooses a district within the city to focus on so there’s something new to look forward to every year. This year, the spotlight is on the 5th Viennese municipal district of Margareten.
Like a hub that connects artists, architects, designers and entrepreneurs to the public, Mexican design week is an accessible platform of events. Its dedication to bridging this gap earned it the appointment of World Design Capital for 2018.
As the largest design festival in Northern Europe, Dutch Design Week expects more than 275,000 visitors and 2,500 designers yearly. Unlike many others, this visionary festival chooses to focus on designs on the future instead.