Design Shanghai 13.04.15

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Mainland China's first international design fair wrapped up its second edition last month, with more than 300 brands showing their products

Design Shanghai returned to the Chinese city from 27-30 March, showcasing 300 design brands for more than 40,000 visitors. Since its inaugural event last year, it is quickly establishing itself as the country's largest, most influential design fair.

This year's incarnation hosted more than a 1,000 product launches, with 70 percent of exhibitors showing in China for the first time. Moroso, Vitra, BoConcept and Ibride were among those showing off their wares, as were Dutch designer Marcel Wanders, Swedish-British duo Fredrikson Stallard and Spanish designer Jaime Hayon.


The exhibition took over all 22,000sq m of the Russian-built Expo Centre, which was divided into three sections for the fair: Contemporary, Classic and Collectibles. Visitors going through the main entrance went straight into the Collectibles Hall, where two large-scale installations competed for attention: Fredrikson Stallard's Prologue for Swarovski, a sculpture comprising 8,000 crystal droplets, and John C Taylor's Dragon Chronophage, a hanging timepiece topped by a dragon.


In the Contemporary Hall were Swiss furniture label Vitra, Canadian homeware company Umbra Danish brands Georg Jensen and HAY, which erected a traditional Chinese bamboo birdcage around its display area, and Zaha Hadid, who showed off a fireplace for Citco Italy. In the Classic Hall, British designers Richard Brendon and Elizabeth Ashard offered customised versions of their work.

Zhoujie Zhang

Chinese designers had a strong showing this year, with furniture designers such as Frank Chou, Naihan Li and Zhoujie Zhang exhibiting their products. Creature of Creation showed 3D-printed ceramics, geometric stainless steel plates and experimental jewellery designs, while Blue Shanghai White offered a contemporary spin on classic blue and white porcelain homeware.

Neri&Hu, the city's best known design duo, created an elegant wooden stand with a domestic theme in the Contemporary Hall, but also undertook guest-speaker duties for a wide-ranging seminar program that also featured Lee Broom, Jaime Hayon, Marcel Wanders and Arik Levy.



Cindy Kuan


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