Created by La Fabrica, under the direction of Álvaro Matías and with the collaboration of a committee of experts, Madrid Design Festival in its 5th iteration presents an intentionally versatile program. The aim is to demonstrate that design can transform our everyday existence, generate methods, change mentalities, and positively alter our environment.
Hence the ambitious proposals, on view until 13 March, touch on all the disciplines, ranging from architecture to graphics, by way of communication and interior design. A lens through which to observe social problems, including the livability and mobility of our cities, the aging of the population, sustainable construction, wellness and improvement of quality of life.
Design thus becomes a key for possible economic growth. The projects are scattered throughout the city, involving institutions and brands (like Bulthaup, Gandiablasco/GAN, Glamora, Herman Miller, Lago, Lladró and Valcucine), companies, museums. The agenda pays homage to Spanish creativity while bringing visibility to an international scene, with 41 exhibitions, 7 installations, 219 activities and the participation of 637 professionals.
At the Fernan Gomez. Centro Cultural de la Villa, the main festival location, visitors will find some of the most important exhibitions. Matador 25 años. Viaje al corazón de una revista mítica celebrates the anniversary of one of the most iconic publications on the Spanish scene, tracing back through its history through the original works of the talents who have ‘inhabited’ its pages, like Patricia Urquiola, Miquel Barceló, Alberto-García-Alix, Marina Abramovic. For the occasion, Swatch – the sponsor of the festival – has created a limited-edition model designed by Luis Gordillo.
Also at the Fernan Gomez, the exhibition Inferencias in collaboration with the Barcelona-based gallery il-lacions, is an invitation to discover contemporary design through a process of interpretation that puts key local creatives and international counterparts into contact. A dialogue between parties who don’t know each other, with the aim of reciprocal benefits.
For the first time, lighting will have its own space in the festival, with the project Fiat Lux 3, an immersive offering that reawakens the senses and knowledge, with the aim of making viewers feel like part of an illusion. Coordinated by Simon and Antoni Arola, Fiat Lux 3 is an architecture of light in which non-existent spaces appear from nowhere, change, mingle and fade away, creating a mixture of visual and aural sensations that gradually shift towards the intangible. Another sensorial journey is that of the new offering by Mazda, SACo and The Sibarist, which through the work of the interior designer Lorna de Santos enables visitors to explore the high value of crafts as an expression of culture and identity.
The problem of water shortage in relation to climate change, pollution, improper use and waste is the focus of the exhibition Dulce Agua, in the CentroCentro location, curated by Ana Domínguez Siemens. A series of objects suggest solutions connected with transport, filtering, conservation and more rational use of this precious resource, while limiting the use of plastic to a minimum.
In the beautiful Plaza de Colón, the project of Ikea Next Gen: Seniors attempts to redesign the city of the future for the longest-living society in history. A physical and digital installation created by the studio Espada & Santacruz gathers information and thoughts with an eye on challenges and possible solutions. Finally, among the prizes organized for the festival, the second edition of the MINI Design Award rewards the creativity of all those professionals and new talents of design who work towards improvement of the quality of life in cities.