Will Sorrell - designjunction's Event Director - sits down with KX Quarterly to tell us what we can expect from the show’s most ambitious year yet.

Posted: Thursday 14th September 2017

Q: Why is designjunction the future of international design shows?
A: We’ve always strived to set trends rather than follow them. We started by breaking the mould of the traditional tradeshow, something which has since been replicated all over the world. Now we’ve changed things again by aligning ourselves with the UK’s most exciting creative neighbourhoods, King’s Cross, full of buildings by some of the country’s best architects, and now being
populated by innovative retail collaborations, world-class businesses and luxury interior design.

Q: What makes designjunction a consumer-facing event (rather than just industry-focussed)?
A: We’ve always believed that you have to mix cultural and commercial to inspire and delight visitors. This comes to life through immersive installations, exciting collaborations and unique food and drink. We also have a large retail and accessories section, where exhibitors are there not only to meet buyers, but to sell directly to designsavvy consumers. Being able to access design is very
important for the show because it’s a key part of a brand’s journey to connect with retailers.

Q: How has the show changed since it started?
A: The show has grown massively in size from exhibiting 25 to over 200 brands. Now we’re an established show in our seventh year, and not only is designjunction a place where exciting new companies launch their latestmproducts, it’s also trusted by international heavyweights.

Q: What makes it unique and different to other known international design shows?
A: One major difference is the team. We’re all from design and creative backgrounds, which means we have a true understanding of exhibitors and visitors. The other difference is the reach. Because of our mix of trade and consumer, and the fact that we’ve done international shows in Milan and New York, we have a strong, diverse, international audience.

Q: What’s new for 2017?
A: For 2017, we have an exciting series of installations on Granary Square which are open to the public. This includes Renault’s Life Designed – the culmination of a year-long collaboration with Central Saint Martins looking at the vehicles of the future; Turkishceramics’ Gateways installation of four giant archways down the middle of Granary Square’s fountains by Adam Nathaniel
Furman; and a tunnel of flowers by Dutch company, bloomon. We’ve also added a new pavilion to the show, Cubitt Park, which will present a mix of cutting-edge emerging design, materials and accessories.

Q: Why choose King’s Cross as the venue for the show?
A: King’s Cross is perfect because of the high design standard in the area. The homes, restaurants and offices being being built are exactly where the products being launched at designjunction will be in a couple of years’ time. Plus, of course, the central location is ideal, with five tube lines, two national rail stations, and the fact you can be in designjunction from Paris in less than three hours.

Q: Tell us about ‘Where Design Meets’?
A: Our campaign this year is #wheredesignmeets. We’re a junction, a connecting point between design, culture, commerce and creativity. Over the campaign – preshow, at the show, and through our talks programme – we’re exploring how design encounters different subtopics such as, Where Design Meets… Home, Workspace, Materials, King’s Cross, to name a few.

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