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IN THIS ISSUE #09
CEES DONKERSEindhoven, Netherlands
The BDW was impressive (again). Meeting great designers at a very cold and wet diner, philosophers, University professionals who became close friends after 7 hours talking, two girlfriends from Novi Sad and Belgrade, the finest good looking organisers in the world, sleeping two nights in a brand new design hotel being their first guest and eating at the most beautiful places tasting real Belgrade food! But also meeting the younger generation: the glocals living local but thinking global. They told me on a beautiful night with local music in my back their thoughts about this moment of CHANGE in the world, the role they expect for themselves in the future and the real DNA of Belgrade. Made me think about 68 and it felt a bit the same. It touched me! Thanks for a beautiful week in Belgrade...
GAVIN LUCASCreative Review / UK
"Belgrade Design Week was a lot of fun. There was a great range of speakers from architectural, graphic and product design practices who all delivered insightful presentations about their work and their particular approach to design. Also, the organizers choice of post-conference restaurants was also superb it was great to get a real flavor of Belgrade at the end of each days conference activities and meet, talk with, and hang out with the festivals illustrious speakers. In short, BDW is a brilliant event. Please, can I come back again next year?
EDWIN HEATHCOTEFinancial Times / UK
I was hugely impressed by the ambition, internationalism and joie de vivre of Belgrade Design Week. The concept of a non-profit festival which puts ideas before commerce and which emphasizes a subtle shift eastwards in an expanding Europe symbolizes a significant moment. The beautiful, vibrant and hospitable city of Belgrade is the perfect host to concretize that moment.
Belgrade Design Week 2012 in the renovated building of the National Library of Serbia
THE GREATEST CREATIVE MINDS OF THE 21ST CENTURY SEND A MESSAGE TO BELGRADE
Belgrade Design Week is arguably the key international event in Serbias cultural calendar, as well as the most significant creative festival in the whole region. What makes this festival so unique is that in its 7th ongoing edition since 2006, its still strictly non-profit, a rarity in the design world, and still not significantly supported by any governmental institution in Serbia, Belgrade or the EU, making it quite an uncertain privately funded affair each year, until it somehow miraculosly raises from the ashes each spring - the more fiercly independent, noncommercial and without quality compromises - with another fresh, relevant topic and its nonpareil line up. The heartpiece of BDW is certainly its now world-famous international design conference, which presents "The greatest creative minds of the XXI century"TM, who in fact render Belgrade Design Week the leading stage where the global creative industries meet the Southeast European region of 100 milion people between Vienna and Istanbul. This year's theme is "FREEDOM SQUARED".
The seventh Belgrade Design Week, from 4 to 10 June 2012, is honored to be invited to present all its programs under the iconic roof of the landmark seventies building by architect Ivo Kurtovi - the National Library of Serbia. This way, BDW participates in the celebration of the 180 years anniversary of this institution - significant for the education and preservation of Serbian national heritage - the keeper of one of the most valuable global cultural treasures for all mankind. In its renovated interior designed by the young Serbian architect Zoran Radoji, an outstanding example of progressive development for venerable institutions with help of the local creative community, BDW will host leading international creatives from all walks of creative industries, carefully balancing between architecture, advertising, industrial design, fashion, publishing, music, art, graphic design, branding, new media
Italian-British industrial designer Martino Gamper, British design studio Troika, new Austrian and French design superstars Thomas Feichtner and Mathieu Lehanneur, Dutch agency 180 AMSTERDAM and UK agency FALLON, outstanding German advertisers Jung Von Matt and the famous creative publisher Robert Klanten of Die Gestalten fame, progressive Norwegian designers Non Format and Heydays, the amazing Jrg Boner and Punkt from Switzerland, Matti Klenell from Sweden and Ole Jensen from Denmark, Jenni Carbins presenting Matilda from Australia, followed by Brazilian and British star-architects Isay Veinfeld and Patrik Schumacher, arguably the freshest Spanish design star Hector Serrano and the already iconic magazine Apartamento, the Aalto University from Finland, the NYC photographer Duan Reljin of VOGUE fame, are some of the names among 30 creative leaders from over twenty countries around the world that will present their work during the three days of the "FREEDOM SQUARED" conference, with help of the more regional representatives such as the Austrian architects Querkraft, the Slovenian studio Enota, Croatian atelier 3LHD, Lasvit from the Czech Republic, Kitchen Budapest from Hungary and Beetroot from Greece, and finally, in a sort of host role, NLSs interior designer Zoran Radoji from Serbia.
At the inaugural press conference, media professionals were welcomed by the director of the National Library of Serbia, Dejan Risti, who expressed his satisfaction that this festival is held in Serbias oldest cultural institution. The National Library of Serbia, as the oldest and most prestigious cultural institution in the country and in the region, sees Belgrade Design Week as a great challenge and a special creative experience that will leave a lasting mark on future activities of the Library.
BDWs chairmen and curator, Jovan Jelovac, talked about a special inspiration for BDW: "I have visited the newly renovated diamond of the National Library of Serbia with undisguised exitement and pleasure, finding it a modest and well balanced project, but nonetheless striking with its respectful but uncompromising contemporary treatment of the original buildings equity. A much needed, sound proof that the local creative industry can, in rare and exceptional cases, compete with global leaders and inspire them as selfunderstaningly as harvesting inspirations from great global design cases. Being part of this creative community myself, I also observed, with equally undisguised jealousy, the "Legal Library", Musical Library and other specialized reading rooms in the new National Library, and made it BDWs mission to help establish a matching collection of design books, as our support for the National Library of Serbias new Foundation. For that purpose BDW will dispatch invitations to our more than 200 alumni who have held lectures at BDW in past seven years, including at least a dozen world famous publishers, to donate their signed monographs and other editions as a base of a new books-stock for this new creative library of the world in Serbia.
But perhaps the most sensational news of this years BDW, a sort of cherry on top for all our efforts, is a huge compliment given to us by our dear friends at Wallpaper. For the first time since the festivals foundation in 2006., the entire course of BDW from opening to closing, will be broadcasted LIVE on the arguably most important design papers in the world webportal: www.wallpaper.com! This broadcast of BDW TV is enabled by kind donation of Luxembourgs high-tech new media and over-the-top provider NOTOLA, and Belgrades own amazing SOUNDRAY system, as the main technology partners of the festival. We are very exited about this breakthorugh, and eager to find out the new possiblities of such an outstanding collaboration effort.
Ole Jensen, product designer DK: 'Freedom' is always an interesting topic to discuss and exchange in the context of art and design. I look forward to get a lot of impressions by colleagues cases, works and expressions of the common word: 'Freedom'. My first thought was that it seemed very banal! The opposite word of freedom is captivity. Who wants to be a prisoner if it's possible to be free? Radical words like freedom always involve the upposite. it's non sense to discuss beautyfull without to involve ugly. It's non sense to discuss rich without poor, expensive without cheap and so on.
Anyway, Even though less free people through the history have made art and design with high human qualities, I'm sure the highest level of freedom is the best way to encourage human values into our design and surroundings. In that way the 'Freedom' topic is a welcome change to find new or recall forgotten human values."
In just a few days Early Birds will be able to get tickets to the Conference at presale price, and each creative industry student who sends a motivation letter at email@example.com will pay only 50% of the total price for students, that is, 50 EUR for this years Belgrade Design Week! Info at: www.belgradedesignweek.com, or from our sales partners: advertiser-serbia.com, tickets.rs, eventim.rs, or from our numerous regional and worldwide partners.
ENOTA, studio SI:We are following the BDW since the very beginning and we consider it to be a truly important gathering of creative industries. We think that you are doing an excellent job bringing all this energy together and we are pleased that this year we will be part of it. And on top of that, it is always good to find an opportunity to visit Belgrade. We know it to be a very vibrant city and we always enjoy our stay here. Freedom by freedom... To nurture freedom of your mind and appreciate freedom of other peoples mind. To aim really high you have to combine them together!