Friday, October 2, 2009

Design Chicago 2009 at Merchandise Mart

This week The Merchandise Mart rolled out the zebra print carpet for Design Chicago, which featured a cocktail reception, luncheon seminars, and portfolio reviews. What I enjoyed most was having the opportunity to keep up with developments in the design world without having to pay design school prices. That's right, this event was free for designers and design students to attend. All of the presenters were very knowledgeable and informative. But the three I am writing about below really impressed me.

Jackie Jordan from Sherwin-Williams gave a presentation about the color trends for 2010, Sherwin-Williams Colormix 2010. I was excited about the color scheme below, which was inspired by African, Aboriginal, and Native American indigenous styles. Sherwin Williams turned to these particular cultures for inspiration because more people feel a desire to be a part of a tribe.

In addition to this delicious array of colors, the Robert Allen Beacon Hill showroom where the seminar was held served delicious mini cupcakes from Sugar Bliss Cake Boutique.

This was my second opportunity to have the pleasure of hearing Susan Szenasy, the Editor in Chief of Metropolis magazine, give a presentation. The title of her presentation, as well as the film (which she directed) that was part of it, was "Brilliant Simplicity." The video features 15 innovative young designers with truly visionary ideas, like living glass, which has gills and opens and closes in response to air quality, biopavers, which have plants growing in them, and street lamps that respond to ambient moonlight and dim accordingly. All of the designers featured in the video are winners of the prestigious Metropolis Next Generation Design Competition. Szenasy made some points that stayed with me, proclaiming that no profession has all the answers, which is why it is important to collaborate with people outside of the design profession. The questions we ask, she said, are too complex to be answered by just one profession. If you ever have the opportunity to see Brilliant Simplicity, I'd definitely recommend it. In the meantime, here's a video about it:

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