Design Miami/ Concludes 13th Edition with Strong Sales, Institutional Acquisitions and Confirms Location for Next 6 Years
/ 2017 fair hosted 34 galleries from 9 countries, alongside 11 Design Curios
/ Several institutional acquisitions confirmed
/ Exhibited pieces ranged from simple to technical with common theme of utopian aspirations / Gallery program exhibited tendency to showcase pieces that instill comfort, coziness and solitude which was reinforced by solid sales
/ Stronger sales results than ever before for vintage American designs
/ Fair location confirmed for 6 more years and will remain immediately adjacent to Art Basel at the Miami Beach Convention Center, the site will be redeveloped as a City Park
Miami, December 12, 2017/
Design Miami/ completed its 13th edition this weekend, following six days of more than 38,000 visits by the collectible design world’s top collectors, curators and members of museum leadership. Themes of past and future, of optimism and philanthropy ran through this year’s fair, and a general spirit of creating a more sustainable world along with a freshly contextualized view of Americana, that melded Shaker with the New Hope School.
Galleries exhibiting pieces designed with utopian aspirations took center stage. First-time gallerist, Converso, presented a solo show of pieces by California modernist architect, Albert Frey, who came to envision the California desert, particularly Palm Springs, as a utopian site to pursue the purity of his architectural ideals. Frey realized a small number of minimalist residences that organically integrate into the surrounding desert. Another first-timer to the fair, Maison Gerard, presented a futuristic isolation sphere from the 1970’s, designed by John Keith Russell exhibited a new typology of design to the fair with Shaker furniture. These simplistic nineteenth century pieces came from a community in Hancock, Massachusetts championing purity of design, form and functionality. A suite of designers followed this design aesthetic, particularly in America, which had a heavy hand throughout this year’s gallery program. Prominent American designers dispersed throughout the fair were well received by attendees and collectors including pieces by George Nakashima at Todd Merrill Studio and Moderne Gallery.
Rodman Primack, Chief Creative Officer of Design Miami/ said of this year’s fair: “There was a distinct commonality behind much of the gallery content this year: furniture with ideals and ideal furniture. These shared narratives lent a level of cohesion rarely achieved; many gallerists seemed to share a common spirit and we are so pleased they brought it to us here in Miami. From the absolute simplicity and utility of the Shaker furniture movement at John Keith Russell’s booth, to the space-age 1971 Isolation Sphere by Maurice-Claude Vidili, at Miason Gerard, we saw design for a better lived life take center stage. Around town, and within our Design Talks program specifically, conversations surrounding advocacy and sustainability were brought to the forefront with a special focus this year on raising awareness, and implementing better practices that support the long-term health and wellbeing of our environment and its inhabitants.” ￼intended as a reprieve from the outside world. Fernando and Humberto Campana were a French architect Maurice-Claude Vidili, ￼￼frequently showcased designer duo across the gallery program due to the strong demand for this ￼aesthetic. Exhibitors included LIZWORKS, Friedman Benda, and more.
￼On the opposite end of the scale, technology and forward-thinking conversations were prominent not only under the Design Miami/ tent, but around town. The Design Curio Rapid Liquid Printing by The MIT Self-Assembly Lab + Christophe Guberan presented by Patrick Parrish Gallery saw a constant stream of guests exploring the space and discussing the wide range of possibilities in furniture design with this newly unveiled technology and the potential for materials. Exploring sustainability and community was frequently discussed within the Design Talks program. The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation tackled these issues along with art and design as a platform for visualizing change and catalyzing societal action. Other notable highlights from the gallery program include Tom Sachs’s foray into design with Salon 94 Design.
The sculptor has been making one-off furniture for over thirty years, but the plywood and Lexan collection he presented is his first investigation into industrialized production. Galerie Patrick Seguin, known for their showcasing of twentieth-century French designers, featured a suite of furniture by Jean Royère, presented within a vignette in the gallery’s space under the tent. All pieces were sold. Alexander Calder at Louisa Guinness Gallery.