For as many years I’ve been attending Design Miami, it’s still an event that’s hard to categorize. 2019 marks the fifteenth year it has been held coinciding with the Art Basel takeover of South Beach. Design Miami’s content is typically broken into three groups, Galleries, Curios and Collaborations / Offsites. The numbers of these modulate from year to year and 2019 felt the most equal in representation.
The galleries, most of which make the trip down from New York are there for sales. While what they exhibit might not always be newest or adventurous design objects, you do get a sense of what’s relevant for collectors and in a wider view how the economy is doing (in leaner years, there’s less focus on large or expensive pieces).
What makes Design Miami standout are the Curios and Collaborations. The Curios feature the work of designers sometimes also demonstrating their process. The TAKT project was one example creating pottery from resin hardened with integrated LED lights. Also notable was Crosby Studios sofa made from repurposed fabric cutoffs and otherwise landfill bound garments from Balenciaga.
Maison Perrier-Jouët uses Design Miami to collaborate with emerging designers and give them exposure. Andrea Mancuso created an installation of thousands of ceramic tiles inspired by a wine cellar. The room houses six individually designed wine glasses by Mancuso representing the metamorphosis of grapes into champagne.
Photos and Text: Dave Pinter