The Northern Design Festival showcases the best in contemporary design by leading, northern, national and international designers. It's a funky event exploring graphics, furniture, fashion, illustration, architecture, ceramics, textiles and lighting.

The Northern Design Festival returns for 2017 this November (3rd – 8th) with the programme announced as Material Matters. Ranging from internationally renowned designers to some of the UK’s hottest emerging makers, this year’s Northern Design Festival will include 50+ inspiring designers, nine enthralling exhibitions, five special events and talks, six venues and a one-day design symposium.

Now firmly established in the national design calendar, the 2017 festival theme is Material Matters, opening on 3 November with the Design NOW symposium featuring a stellar line-up of speakers including Anthony Burrill and Sarah Hyndman.

Exhibitions include:

– Aurora – a new installation by Giles Miller Studio which specialises in the development of truly innovative surface, sculptural and architectural works including award-winning projects for Stella McCartney, the Design Museum and the V&A
– Unforsaken (Part 1) – a new exhibition by graphic artist and director Jimmy Turrell , who has produced work for Adidas, Beck, The Guardian, Miguel and the New York Times
– Daniel Schofield – a solo exhibition including new pieces by the Elle Decoration British Design Award-winner who has produced work for Benchmark, Scandium and Conran in the first five years of his practice
– Material Explorations – a selection of 50 innovative materials to touch and explore from self-healing concrete to smile plastics. Find out how these material properties are informing the designs of tomorrow in this exhibition from SCIN the UK’s largest independent materials library
– New Boosbeck – furniture designed and built in collaboration with community groups from a social enterprise inspired by the iconic 1930s initiative that aimed to address unemployment through creativity
– Art on Paper Since 1885 – iconic printed pieces from the G .F. Smith archive including contributors such as Saul Bass, Milton Glaser, Paul Rand, SEA, MadeThought, and Studio Makgill
– Material Matters – interior design, graphic design, fashion, surface design, product design and photography from Newcastle College students and alumni
– Chairs and Lamps – work by 3D Design students at Northumbria University

Launching on Friday 3 November, some of the world’s leading designers and creatives will gather in the North East for Design NOW – a one day symposium. Confirmed speakers include graphic artist, printmaker and designer Anthony Burrill , whose work is held in the V&A and the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and is sought after by collectors and clients including Apple, Google and Hermés; graphic designer, writer and speaker with expertise in multi sensory typography Sarah Hyndman ; Newcastle-born illustrator, designer and director Jimmy Turrell ; and designer Giles Miller who specialises in the development of truly innovative surfaces for interior, hospitality and retail design projects.

New for 2017, Design Source is a curated selling exhibition aimed at interior design professionals and buyers looking to source the the best furniture, product, textiles, wallpaper lighting, ceramics and jewellery from across the North of England. Exhibitors are selected by a panel of industry experts including Sara Ley (Head of Retail at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art), Rickard Whittingham (Programme Leader, 3D Design and Designers in Residence, Northumbria University), and Kaylee Jenkinson (Exhibitions Officer, Manchester Craft and Design Centre).

Work selected this year includes wallpapers, cushions, textiles and stools in on trend colours and materials from Susi Bellamy; contemporary handcrafted furniture from Galvin Brothers including their Brocklesby Ash dining table which takes its name from local sustainably sourced timber; craftsman Nick James will launch a new bar stool in solid oak planed, routed and sanded to show the beauty of the wood with curved joints that flow smoothly into each other create a comfortable shape; and contemporary art jeweller Chloe Lewis who combines her passion for the environment, with her love of experimentation and metal work skills to produce statement jewellery.

Tours and talks include Design and Wellbeing – a tour of Maggie’s Centre which offers a unique approach to cancer care with architecture and design used to calm and uplift with interior designer David Wallace, art advisor Mara-Helen Wood and in-house architect Diego Seisdedos; a Makers Workshop at BALTIC 39 – part of a series of workshops and events designed by the Crafts Council to provide makers with skills to promote their work successfully; Architects Breakfast – an exclusive opportunity for architects, interior designers, developers and commissioners to meet some of the designers taking part, plus BoConcept Newcastle will be sharing insights into their heritage materials and how these support their design philosophy, providing individuality, and customisation; and SCIN will host Material Blast – a series of exciting talks that round off their immersive exhibition, Material Exploration, held throughout the week at Cooper’s Studios.

Director Karen Nairstone said: “ This year’s festival explores the materials that surround us every day through brand new commissions from internationally renowned designers and artists alongside work from established and up-and-coming Northern designers and creatives. Whether you work or study in the industry or just love good design, there’s something for everyone.”

The 2017 Northern Design Festival takes place from 3rd – 8th November at venues across Newcastle and Gateshead, including the historic Assembly House as the festival hub where most exhibitions are held, and nearby Cooper’s Studios. Exhibitions are open daily 10 – 5pm and tickets are £2.50 for unlimited exhibition entry, or free for under 18s and staff places on school and college group visits. Prices vary for talks and special events. | @DesignEventNE

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