The Numbers are In from Design Miami 2009

The numbers from Design Miami have been tallied and in its fifth year, the event saw a marked increase in visitor figures, up by 4.5 percent from last year in addition to bold gallery presentations and lively cultural programming with a record 23,000 attendees. 

Director of Design Miami, Ambra Medda, comments, “Design Miami this year was perhaps our most energetic edition since we began five years ago. It felt as if a younger generation had taken hold of design, with gallerists, our own programming, and visitors being prepared to take risks, whether by collaborating with younger lesser-known designers or investing in them. There was a strong sense of everyone participating and bringing something creative to the table.” Attendance at this year’s event was distinguished particularly by what some are calling a highly design-literate audience “characterized by serious collection, curators, architects, journalists, and celebrities including Victor & Rolf, John McEnroe, Elle McPherson, and Naomi Campbell.” 

And while one certainly cannot deny the positive perception everyone had about the event, the numbers which were just released do not lie.   

General numbers just released from Design Miami include: 

  • Attendees 23,000 up 4.5 percent from last year.
  • Sales were cautious but strong, with highlights including MOSS Gallery selling three of Maarten Baas’ Grandfather clocks, at $100,000 each, and Ornamentum selling Ted Noten’s UZI Suitcase, worth $85,000, within ten minutes of the opening.
  • Many of the galleries reported strong interest and enquiries from museums from the US as well as Europe and China.
  • More than 475 journalists registered and attended the fair from over 25 countries worldwide.  

Notables in attendance include:

Christian Louboutin
Silvia Venturini Fendi
Pharrell Williams
Tom Dixon
Rene Kamm
Sam Keller
Nadja Swarovski
Naomi Campbell
Maarten Baas
Adam Lindemann
George Lindemann
Mortiz Waldemeyer
Lee Mindel
Mattia Bonetti
Gaetano Pesce
Al Eiber
Libby Sellers
Sabina Belli (Moet Hennessy)
Victor & Rolf
Andre Saraiva (Le Baron)

Major sponsors of Design Miami 2009 included:   

Design Miami’s Associate Director, Wava Carpenter, adds, “This year’s edition of Design Miami really marks the coming of age for collectable design. There was a fear articulated in many quarters in 2008 that interest in collection design would disappear as a result of the recession. But out latest edition of Design Miami has proved that design collecting is here to stay, and as a result we’ve seen a resurgent confidence among both gallerists and collectors.”

Maarten Baas, designer of the year pictured below. Photo by Red Eye Productions