After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, Singapore Design Week (SDW) is back in full force. The design festival, which occurs on 16 to 25 September this year and technically spans slightly more than a week, focuses on creativity and innovation by celebrating some of the region’s brightest names in design.
Having undergone a major strategic review in the past two years, the festival now returns with a brand-new vision shaped by three festival pillars: Design Futures, Design Marketplace, and Design Impact.
This year, SDW is packed with a slew of programmes, events and installations across Singapore that will put a spotlight on Southeast Asian design. United by the three festival pillars, SDW 2022 will feature more than 50 events and 200 designers over the course of 10 days.
Here, we round up the art, design and architecture highlights to catch at this year’s festival.
Conferred by the President of Singapore and jointly administered by the DesignSingapore Council and the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the President*s Design Award (P*DA) is recognised as the highest honour for designers and design projects across all disciplines in Singapore.
Making its debut at SDW 2022 is the President*s Design Award Tours, a new signature P*DA series that offers the public first-hand opportunities at exploring some of the winning projects through immersive tours and self-guided journeys.
Two types of tours are available; ‘Design that Cares’ by Monster Day Tours will explore spaces like the Enabling Village, Pinnacle@Duxton and Bynd Artisan’s workspace where participants will get to enjoy behind-the-scene experiences and workshops, while ‘The Hunt for the Green Treasure’ by Tribe Tours is a guided game tour where participants have to decipher a series of puzzles issued by a famous architect to uncover a mysterious green treasure.
While the tours will be ongoing, the special SDW editions will feature exclusive experiences that are not normally available to the public.
Only on 17 September 2022 and 24 September 2022, more details can be found here.
See Little India through new eyes with Re-Route, a creative placemaking festival designed by Mervin Tan and Cheryl Sim from Plus Collaboratives. Take a detour from your typical route around the district and explore Little India’s lesser-known history with a new perspective via curated experiences, installations, programmes, and other design interventions. Sites such as the race course and New World amusement parks have been reinterpreted into modern settings such as a member’s lounge and café, a festival-branded retail store and spaces for live entertainment.
From 16 September – 9 October 2022, specific locations and timings will be released closer to the start date.
One of the main anchor events at this year’s SDW is the debut of Find (Furniture, Interiors and Design) Design Fair Asia. Taking place from September 22 to 24, several notable names in the furnishings and design industry will gather at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre to showcase their new collections and designs. Exhibitors include architectural lighting brand Erco, Italian furnishings company Fiam Italia, as well as designers Bull & Stein, famous for their oversized fruit sculptures made of precious materials.
As part of the Find design fair, there will also be a dedicated Southeast Asian design showcase termed the Emerge @ Find pavilion. Over 50 established and emerging designers, which include Singapore and Milan-based studio Lanzavecchia + Wai, Filipino designer Stanley Ruiz and Indonesian designer Alvin Tjitrowirjo, will unveil new works at the showcase.
From 22 – 24 September 2022, at Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre.
Spearheaded by fashion director Daniel Boey, virtual fashion festival The Front Row’s #FashTag returns this year with an exploration of the possibilities for fashion in a digital post-pandemic world. Held at Raffles City Shopping Centre, there will be a series of collaborative, cross-disciplinary physical and virtual events, including a fashion photography showcase consisting of new works, collaborations and archival pieces, an open discussion helmed by Susanna Jaafar of Zerrin on sustainable and respectable fashion, as well as a special NFT showcase curated by MIRL, the organisers of Meta Jam Asia, the first NFT Festival in Asia.
From 16 – 25 September 2022, at Raffles City Shopping Centre.
Developed by Italian architect and curator Paola Antonelli who serves as the curatorial director for the Design Futures Symposium 2022, the conference this year will explore both the future of design and designs of the future. Split between three sessions, topics of discussion at the symposium include designing for local and global challenges, how design can integrate humans and nature together in order to thrive and flourish, and how design can harness technology to build a better and more inclusive future.
Joining Antonelli is a diverse lineup of speakers that include British designer Thomas Heatherwick, the man behind several iconic buildings in Singapore such as the NTU Learning Hub and the Eden condominium; Natsai Audrey Chieza, founder and CEO of R&D studio Faber Futures that creates biologically inspired materials; as well as Dr. Emi Kiyota, associate professor at the National University of Singapore and director of programmes.
Only on 20 September 2022, at the Victoria Theatre.
Pop by the National Design Centre to take a peek at N*thing Is Possible, a storytelling multimedia exhibition showcase that explores the possibilities of a zero-waste lifestyle across design, art, architecture, music, food and fashion. Led by Potato Head, the creators of the Desa Potato Head creative village, and co-curated with award-winning firm Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), the showcase is brought to life with collaborators the likes of renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, British furniture designer Max Lamb, London-based design studio Toogood and more.
The three-month show will include talks, panels and workshops that will involve several of the collaborators and designers.
From 16 September – 25 December 2022, at the National Design Centre.