Strong turn-out at the first edition of Design Days Dubai

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Design Days Dubai, the Middle East and South Asia’s first fair dedicated to collectible and limited edition furniture and design objects, has ushered in a new chapter in the arts and cultural scene of Dubai by defining a strong platform for emerging and established designers, and recording a turnout of 8,500 high-end visitors.

Collectors, curators, critics, designers and both design enthusiasts and neophytes from the region and world at large descended upon the custom-built tent at the foot of the Burj Khalifa to see the edited collections of 22 of the world’s leading design art galleries. Numerous designers working at an international level joined them to represent their existing catalogue of work and site-specific performance installations, including Austrian design duo mischer’traxler, Brazilian designers Leo Capote, Amaury, Hugo França and Pedro Bernandes, British designer Dominic Harris, Dutch design studio Studio DRIFT, Emirati designer Khalid Shafar and Korean designer Kwangho Lee.


Some strong sales were reported amongst the exhibiting galleries including Nakkash Gallery who sold almost all of their exhibits.  Gallery Seomi was also very pleased to have been involved: “Design Days Dubai, for its first time in Dubai, certainly brought various excitements as well as opportunities for both galleries and the audiences in the design world. It is always great to be the first ones to discover and develop a market and through the interests and participations of the audiences in Dubai, I am positive that Design Days Dubai will play an important role to expand the design market into another part of the world,” said gallery owner, PJ Park.


Many galleries have already confirmed involvement in 2013’s edition of the fair.  Demonstrating the growing demand for design industry in the region, the inaugural Design Days Dubai put the spotlight on regional design and craftsmanship. Plans are already afoot for the second edition of Design Days Dubai in 2013, which will include a non-commercial platform to promote emerging talents in the Middle East and increased coordination with regional institutions (such as those in Qatar). Cyril Zammit, Fair Director, Design Days Dubai, said: “This first edition of Design Days Dubai has been a great success, with the participation of world class design galleries and high calibre visitors from all over the globe, including a particularly strong turn-out from the region. The regional impact has been incredible with many designers, companies, students and educators from the region already contacting us with ideas of how they could be involved in 2013. Their support is hugely encouraging as we begin to look at how we can grow the event and provide not just a fair for collectible design to the local and regional community but a platform to show Middle Eastern design on an international level.


Design Days Dubai was held from March 18 to 21, 2012, at a specially designed venue by the base of Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai, the flagship development of Emaar Properties. The event was organised in partnership with Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), The Address Hotels + Resorts, and with the support of design patrons Audi and Van Cleef & Arpels.  Timed to overlap with the opening of Art Dubai, the region’s leading contemporary art fair, Design Days Dubai is an integral part of Art Week, the umbrella initiative that includes Art Dubai, Design Days Dubai and Sikka.

Photos courtesy of Design Days Dubai.
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