The theme at this year’s Design City LX Festival is design as a common language that can serve as a mediator between conflicting sides. Exhibitions, talks, discussions, and events will be taking place over a four-week period, all under the slogan “Me Craft – You Industry – We Design”. There is an exciting and diverse programme of events: Open House tours will see workshops, studios, and agencies open their doors to give visitors an insight into the working lives of creatives; in the Designathon City Challenge experts will work alongside students and those interested in design on joint projects; and the artist trio Boijeot Renauld will transform streets and squares into places of social interaction through their installations and simple objects.
“Reciprocity” is the name of the international Triennial of Design and Social Innovation in Liège and refers to the interaction between design and society. The results of workshops that preceded the Triennale and in which students, members of the public, teachers, and members of cultural organisations worked together on various topics, such as “fragility” as a social phenomenon, will be presented in various locations in the Belgian city and its surroundings. In this regard, it involves researching and critically reflecting on design and supporting the production of ethical and sustainable projects. The entire programme, which includes further exhibitions, guided tours, lectures and workshops, can be found here.
Fikra Graphic Design Biennial 01
This year, the inaugural Fikra Graphic Design Biennial takes place in Sharjah, the second largest city in the United Arab Emirates. Its title heralds the entirely fictional “Ministry of Graphic Design” (inspired by the UAE’s actual government structure) which includes Ministers of State for Happiness and Artificial Intelligence. Over a period of three weeks, attendees will present, research, and explore contemporary graphic design, at an event aimed at both professionals and the general public. Projects are presented in different formats, international or regional, in five departments, each headed by a different curator and spread over five floors of the exhibition building.
Us by Night
Us by Night is not a classic design festival, but rather a combination of nightlife and the creative scene. For the third time in the event’s history, the exhibition hall in Antwerp is transformed into a “visual amusement park” and is therefore not only aimed at the creative industries, but also at a general audience interested in culture. At the events all taking place in the evening (admission from 4 pm), visitors can expect to find art installations, performances, a night market inspired by the Brooklyn Night Bazaar, and a variety of lectures, often in conjunction with major fashion and streetwear labels such as Adidas, Nike, and Puma. Visitors can also enjoy table tennis or arcade games, be tattooed or eat at one of the many street-food stands.
Chiang Mai Design Week
Chiang Mai is the cultural centre of northern Thailand and is known for its traditional handicrafts. Chiang Mai Design Week aims not only to provide a stage for its local businesses, but also to promote innovative and new approaches in design. Spread over the whole city, the event is divided into three areas: Business of Design is dedicated to presenting established and up-and-coming designers and companies and aims to facilitate new business relationships; Network of Creators brings stakeholders together through conferences, workshops, and other events; Promotion of Creative District is dedicated to the design scene in Chiang Mai’s old town and includes exhibitions, music, art, and guided tours. The aim is to create a connection made up of tradition and innovation that supports Chiang Mai’s efforts to achieve the status of UNESCO Creative City.