“As an architect you design for the present, with an awareness of the past, for a future which is essentially unknown.”– Norman Foster
Visiting design and architecture fairs is an excellent opportunity to learn about new trends and inventions, familiarize yourself with this year’s top technological solutions, see inspiring projects, and, most importantly, build up your network. They help you connect with the design community and give you unique insights into the possibilities and potential of your industry.
After a couple of slow years, the biggest design and architecture events are finally opening their doors and welcoming visitors from across the globe. Take a look at some of the top global events you should check out if you have the chance.
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NeoCon – Chicago
NeoCon is THE design event to attend if you’re into interior design. First launched in 1969, it’s been attracting millions of designers, architects, students, and enthusiasts annually. After a virtual conference in 2020 and a hybrid virtual and on-site experience in 2021, NeoCon was finally back in its full glory in Chicago between June 13 and June 15.
Offering countless fascinating guest speakers, innovative exhibitors, and valuable CEU (Continued education unit) programs, the event had a little bit of everything for everyone – talks about sustainability in the design industry, glimpses into the advanced solutions in commercial design, and more.
Tallinn Architecture Biennale – Tallinn
The Tallinn Architecture Biennale (TAB) is organized annually in Tallinn, Estonia. Lasting from September until November, the program is titled “Edible; Or, The Architecture of Metabolism.”
You’ll enjoy a diverse program that focuses on the themes of circularity in architecture, self-sufficiency, and ways to reuse waste produced in urban environments.
You can enjoy the two-day symposium “Edible” between September 8th and 9th, attend the “Fungible Non-Fungible” installation opening by IHEARTBLOB, visit the TAB Gala, and more.
Of course, the TAB event wouldn’t be complete without unique competitions, including the “Future Food Deal,” “Schools Exhibition,” “Vision Competition,” and “Installation Competition.”
MVRDVHNI: The Living Archive of a Studio – Rotterdam
The MVRDVHNI: The Living Archive of a Studio event organized at the Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam, Netherlands, is one of the largest of its kind. The Instituut presents over 400 MVRDV projects, displaying the archive as a living entity in an office context rather than a gallery context.
The event’s main themes are characterized as “green, human, and dream,” focusing on how all architectural ideas transcend time, moving freely through the past, present, and future.
The centerpiece of the event is MVRDV’s Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen – the world’s first publicly accessible art depot.
If you want to check out the exhibitions, the event closes on September 4th.
Greenbuild International Conference & Expo – San Francisco
As the name would suggest, Greenbuild is one of the biggest conferences dedicated to sustainable, green building. The Greenbuild International Conference & Expo is scheduled from November 1st to November 3rd. You’ll get to enjoy presentations from some of the most influential leaders in the residential construction industry and educational speeches from the likes of Jane Fonda.
With plenty of interactive elements, dynamic networking opportunities, and insightful virtual experiences, the event focuses on sustainable cities and communities, new workplaces, social equity, new technology, and more.
Chicago Build Expo – Chicago
The Chicago Build Expo is the event to attend if you’re into construction and design. As the largest Midwestern show, it welcomes thousands of attendees, and this year, it will give you a chance to see over 250 exhibitors, listen to over 270 guest speakers, and enjoy countless AIA/CES-approved workshops.
Scheduled for October 13th and 14th, the entry is free to all attendees, so you can easily schedule your ticket and enjoy the experience.
Design Miami/ Fair – Miami
The 18th edition of Design Miami will be held alongside the Art Basel Fair at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Scheduled for November 30 to December 4, it will offer a design marketplace where you’ll get to explore 20th and 21st century furniture, lighting, and objects d’art exhibitions from some of the most renowned galleries. You’ll also get to enjoy panels and lectures from the thought leaders in the fields of design, architecture, and even art and fashion.
Sigurd Lewerentz: Architect of Death and Life – Stockholm
You can join the Sigurd Lewerentz: Architect of Death and Life event in Stockholm, Sweden. Organized for the first time this year, the event will focus on the life and work of none other than the renowned Swedish architect Sigurd Lewerentz. You’ll learn about his famous structures, such as St Mark in Stockholm and St Peter in Klippan, as well as his lesser-known works on the chapel at the Woodland Cemetery in Stockholm.
It’s a unique event where you’ll learn about the evolution of Lewerentz’s designs and get the chance to take a walk through history.
Serious Fun. Architecture and Games – Vienna
Scheduled for the period between March 17 and September 5, the “Serious Fun. Architecture and Games” is a one-of-a-kind event that takes a deeper look at the connection between real-world architectural designs and architectural games. It focuses on the more entertaining side of architecture and culture, getting you to reflect on how they impact and shape one another.
Muscon – Milan
Countless art, design, and architecture museums have come together in Milan for the Muscon event held between October 12 and October 15. With the title “Unknown Unknowns: An Introduction to Mysteries,” the event will cover diverse topics, from the evolution of design and architecture to the growth of cities and innovations in science.
World Architecture Festival – Lisbon
Finally, the World Architecture Festival organized in Lisbon, Portugal, is the perfect event for architects and artists. You can enjoy the WAF and Inside Awards competitions, listen to international guest speakers as they dive deeper into the topics of main architectural challenges, and explore the most intriguing architectural projects of the year.
With the title “Together,” the event will primarily focus on the changes in architectural design in the post-pandemic world.
If you’re interested, you can visit the event between November 30 and December 2.
After a chaotic couple of years, the world’s biggest design and architecture events are finally opening their doors to the public in 2023. Join these events, network with your peers, and learn about the main trends and challenges in your industry.
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