Design Pioneers Talks at Design Miami/ 2012

Stefano Tonchi, Patricia Urquiola, Joseph Altuzarra, and Rafael de Cardenas at Design Talks, 2011

Material culture has never existed in a vacuum; taste, critique, and praise have all developed out of dialogue with each other and with the objects we’re speaking of (and to). The Design Talks Program at this year’s Design Miami/ is dedicated to Design Pioneers who have furthered the field through their impact on methods of production, style or discourse, and  who have taken the ethos of their movement to further heights.

The talks will feature established designers who have significantly influenced the aesthetics of design within the span of their careers. They’ll speak to peers and collaborators about the role their work has played within design history, how their work has changed over their careers and future directions that the design world might take.

Diane von Furstenberg. Photography: Lorenzo Agius

Diane von Furstenberg – the lauded and loved designer and philanthropist – will be having a discussion with Stefano Tonchi, Editor-in-Chief of W Magazine and creator of T:The New York Times Style Magazine, on December 5 from 6-7pm.


On December 6, Vito Acconciwhose studio was named our 2012 Designer of the Year and whose sometimes controvercial work in architecture has pushed the limits of both theory and practice – will be speaking with Architecture PhD Mitchell Joachim from 6-7pm.

Wendell Castle, the acclaimed “father” of the art furniture movement and a towering figure in American craft, will speak on December 7 from 6-7pm with critic, curator and author Alastair Gordon.

Each talk will be followed by a book signing.

Pharrell speaking at Design Miami

Other talks will touch upon different aspects of design culture. The boundary-pushing and future-producing. On December 7 at 3:00pm, Pharrell will be discussing his new book “Pharrell: Places and Spaces I’ve Been” – which will be on sale at the ARTBOOK & Shop at the Cooper-Hewitt pop-up bookstore at the fair – and the intersections of music, street art, fashion and design that influences his brand and personhood. On December 5 at 3:00pm, Swarovski Crystal Palace will host a talk with designer Asif Khan and Kenya Hara about the immersive installation that will be present at this year’s fair. The environment produced by Khan explores the relationship between light, crystal forms, nature and architecture.

We wrap the world around us with our words to give shape and meaning to objects, events and actions. The Design Talks Program at this year’s Design Miami/ will serve as a forum for reflection and contemplation for some of the design world’s key players, and give the audience an intimate opportunity to be a part of these ever-important discussions.

Categories / Acconci Studio, Alastair Gordon, Asif Khan, Design Talks, Diane von Fürstenberg, Kenya Hara, Mithcell Joachim, Nadja Swarovski, Pharrell Williams, Stefano Tonchi, Swarovski Crystal Palace, Vito Acconci, Wendell Castle