By Katy B. Olson
NYCxDESIGN is more than a tourist draw; it’s big business. The Big Apple is home to over 44,000 working designers across disciplines like furniture, interiors, architecture, product and more, and many—in addition to plenty of visiting aficionados—will descend on the city’s fourth annual design fair as both exhibitors and consumers. Running May 3 through May 17, the city’s celebration of all things design boasts more than 500 events, including exhibitions, installations, trade shows, talks, launches and open studios. Plus, the fair’s stalwarts are debuting a slew of exciting new programs. EAL has culled the most compelling shows happening next week, below:
Collective Design Fair Leads With the Avant-Garde (May 4-8)
The contemporary Collective Design Fair will host an installation by nendo; an exhibition of work by graduate students from the Cranbrook Academy of Art; Collective Concept, a new platform for lighting, furnishing, ceramics and textiles by designers Lindsey Adelman, Apparatus Studio, Fort Standard, Calico Wallpaper and Cocobolo Design; and the site-specific installation “Glacial Drift,” at the fair’s entrance, created by the experimental design studio The Principals. Up for both viewing and buying are works, art and objects from 31 worldwide exhibitors, hailing from Beijing, Chicago, Madrid, Mexico City, New York, Oslo, Paris and Vienna. (550 Washington St.)
Sight Unseen Highlights Up-and-Coming Makers (May 4-8)
Also at Collective, Sight Unseen will debut new work from five emerging, independent American design studios, including furniture, objects, and lighting set against a backdrop of custom-made wallpaper. The talent includes Only Love Is Real, Studio Proba + Bower, Chris Wolston and Fort Makers. (550 Washington St.)
Additionally, Sight Unseen Offsite, which will be held May 13 to 16 at the Grace Building, will feature work from exhibitors like Ben Barber, All Roads Studio, Aelfie, Other Kingdom, Object & Totem and more, all culled by the online magazine’s editors.
Frieze New York Showcases Wealth of Art (May 5-8)
More than 1,000 artists and galleries will be introduced at Randall’s Island Park (accesible via a five-minute ferry ride from Manhattan) for Frieze New York, including local, national and international names like Rio’s A Gentil Carioca, Shanghai’s Antenna Space and Paris’ Art:Concept. Frieze New York will also host a series of talks with Paola Antonelli, Andrea Crespo, Thomas Demand, Holly Herndon, Jens Hoffman, Mark Leckey, Eileen Myles and Jacolby Satterwhite. Get all the details.
WantedDesign Shows Promote Emerging Talent (May 7-17)
The two WantedDesign NYC fairs (one running at Manhattan’s Terminal Stores May 13 to 16, and one in Industry City, Brooklyn, May 7 to 17) will host product launches, installations, a conversation series and platforms for emerging designers, like the American Design Honors, an award program that celebrates the country’s young designers. This year’s winner is Steven Haulenbeek, whose installation will appear at the Manhattan fair’s entrance. (Manhattan: 271 11th Ave.; Brooklyn: 220 36th St.)
ICFF Returns With New Talent (May 14-17)
ICFF's programs include the inaugural Design Milk Stand, a pop-up shop featuring American and Canadian designers including Pigeon Toe Ceramics, Analog Watch Co., Swissted posters, Konzuk jewelry, and Capsule wallets, among others, all curated by Design Milk editor Jaime Derringer; Best of Design Week, a new partnership that invites global Design Weeks (including Tokyo and Barcelona) to share their work; and a collaboration with Luxe Interiors + Design that will display its first exhibition dedicated to high-end contemporary and classic interior design, with brands representing the top furniture, lighting, accessories, art objects, materials, flooring and more. (Javits Center)
Solis Drum Lamp by Pablo Designs
ICFF will also host a number of notable product launches, including pieces from Waterworks, Case Furniture, Pablo Designs, Thislexik, and designers like Aristeu Pires, Jader Almeida, Tom Dixon and Christopher Guy and countless others. Learn more.
DesignJunction + Dwell on Design Team Up (May 13-15)
In another first, the U.K.’s DesignJunction, which launched last year, is parterning with Dwell on Design for a 30-strong showcase of the top European design brands along with smaller emerging firms at the ArtBeam venue over May 13 to 15. Dwell editor in chief Amanda Dameron will return with a three-day discussion series. (540 W 21st St.)
The Design Pavilion/NYC Design Talks
Thought leaders and innovative companies like Rafael Viñoly, Michael Shvo, IBM Studio, DuPont Corian, Related Companies, Design Trust for Public Space, NYC Department of Design and Construction, AIGA, IDSA and others will discuss a range of topics, from design’s social impact to sustainability in fashion, in discussions held at schools throughout the city. Check out the full schedule.
The first-ever contest, “celebrating the outstanding achievement across major areas of design—from architecture to interiors, from products to collectibles, from craft to technology,” will announce the winners in a May 14 ceremony at the MoMA. Learn more.
WantedDesign’s Launch Pad program is an international contest for independent designers and small companies seeking a manufacturer for their new products. The Launch Pad Best of 2016 will be decided by a star-studded jury led by Jaime Derringer, founder and executive editor of Design Milk, with Marva Griffin Wilshire, founder of Salone del Mobile Milano and curator and international press director of SaloneSatellite; Giulio Cappellini, creative director at Cappellini; Massimo Zanatta, Director of the Marangoni Design Campus; and Noah Schwarz, director of merchandising at Design Within Reach. To be held May 16, 1:30 to 3 pm. Learn more.
Discover the full list of programs, and check back here for updates as more events and launches are announced.