Stephan Kurzawski, Senior Vice President of Consumer Goods and Sales at Messe Frankfurt, shares more about one of the biggest international design fairs happening next year.

Design lovers looking for the next wave of decor trends emerging from Europe don’t have to look very far beyond the Ambiente fair in Frankfurt next February, as the annual expo boasts the gathering of the world’s noted design houses and industrial designers. Here are some highlights to expect from the upcoming edition.

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WHAT’S IS NEXT YEAR’S FAIR THEME ABOUT?

Aside from featuring new products from the dining, living and gifting categories, Ambiente is also the host for several international design awards. For example, we have the Dineus Award, which is for tabletop design, and the Tableware International Award of Excellence. Then there’s also the German Design Award, which is one of the biggest and most coveted awards over the world.

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ARE THERE ANY NEW INITIATIVES FOR 2020?

We’re very excited about HoReCa, which is an additional dining product range exhibit. These days, the restaurant and hotel businesses are thriving all over the world, and HoReCa aims to meet the needs of these businesses. It’s also going to feature talks by top speakers such as Dr Francesca Zampollo, Ido Garin, and Jozef Youssef. They’ll be sharing about interesting topics like the art of multisensory gastronomy.

WHAT UPCOMING TRENDS CAN WE EXPECT?

The focus is on three trends: Shaped + Softened, which is a feminine organic style, Precise + Architectural, which focuses on minimalism and a deeper colour palette, and Artistical + Diverse, which will include more handcrafted items.

Every year we select a country and focus on its design scene, and in 2020 the spotlight will also be on Brazil.

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THIS YEAR WE WANTED TO FOCUS ON BRAZIL BECAUSE IT IS POISED TO EXPLODE ONTO THE DESIGN SCENE.

WHY BRAZIL?

Brazil is an upcoming market in the design industry. While the focus traditionally tends to be on cities like Milan and Copenhagen, this year we wanted to focus on Brazil because it is poised to explode onto the design scene. It’s now re-emerging after some 50 years and they have been investing very much in their design industry, so Brazil is one to watch. We will be featuring five design studios, some trained in Brazil, some trained internationally, so it will be very interesting to see the diversity of styles they present.

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WHAT IS THE ETHICAL STYLE GUIDE SECTION ABOUT?

Sustainability is a trend that is gathering more momentum on a global scale. The Ethical Style Guide addresses this with a curated directory that visitors can use to guide them to designers presenting sustainable and socially responsible products at Ambiente. These can be products made with eco-friendly materials, recycled materials, crafted by hand, and so on. The designers are carefully screened by an independent panel of judges, including institutions such as the World Fair Trade Organisation. One of them includes Aranya Crafts from Bangladesh, who has been producing sustainable dyes since 1990, and each product tells its own story of Bengali craftsmanship. We believe that the Guide reflects forward thinking and the spirit of our time, and hope it adds value to the design industry. 

The Ambiente Design Fair will be taking place from 7 – 11 February, 2020. To register, visit www.visitortickets.messefrankfurt.com.

Photography ALAN LEE / K STUDIO