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Set the Agenda - Summer 2022

Vicky Stoakes

Communications Director

With a summer of major events about to kick off (hello Glastonbury and Wimbledon!), we’ve hand-picked the design events that are making us look twice.

For the first time in two years design graduate shows are back live and in person. Plus San Francisco Design Week kicks off today, one of the world’s most exciting and future thinking design events. Our picks will take you from London, to San Francisco and Manchester, to New York and back to London again. Just don’t forget your passport and sunscreen!

New Designers - Business Design Centre, Islington (29 June - 9 July)

Returning as a physical event this summer, New Designers connects 3,000 hand-picked graduate design talents from around the UK, with industry employers, media, trend predictors and a design hungry public! As well as a chance to see some of the most exciting designers of the future, there are over 30 awards, plus a curated programme of talks and an opportunity for the graduates to gain mentorship from leading design professionals.

For any design students not featured at New Designers, check out the Design Community Hub and its presence on Guild where a list of exciting internships and portfolio reviews and other support about entering the design industry can be found!

Also for individual college design shows, visit their websites or have a look on Eventbrite for tickets for shows at places like Central Saint Martins (amongst many others).

San Francisco Design Week (21-25 June)

SFDW is a week-long city-wide festival showcasing the intersection of ideas, design, business and entrepreneurism which makes the Bay Area one of the most exciting places for design thinking. There will be studio tours, events, talks and exhibitions covering all aspects of the design industry from graphic design, product design, digital, architecture, fashion and everything in-between. With a focus on diversity and inclusion the organisers are committed to elevating ALL voices. There will also be a number of virtual events to appeal to the global design community.

Design Festival North (12-14 July)

Manchester has more creative businesses, designers and architects per square mile than any other northern city, making it a true design hub. Design Festival North is a 3-day showcase of leading design brands, agencies and companies, presented in a series of events taking place across Manchester. There will even be a Lego challenge battle…and who doesn’t love Lego?

Design and Healing: Creative Responses to Epidemics (Cooper Hewitt, New York until February 2023)

What is design’s role in times of crisis? Communities and individuals come together to aid each other, push for change, and create new spaces, objects, and services. Epidemics—both in the past and in the present—have triggered the discovery of new ways to treat and prevent disease while exposing systemic gaps and failures. This exhibition is a designers (and artists, doctors, engineers and more) response to the question ‘How can I help?’

The London Design Festival – various locations inc V&A (17-25 September)

The London Design Festival is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year with a program of events, installations and exhibitions set to take place across the capital. Each year, the festival presents a number of projects at the V&A as part of its residency at the museum, as well as commissioning leading designers and architects to create landmark projects across the city. We’re also big fans of the Global Design Forum and the talks that ignite proactive design thinking. The full programme has not been announced yet, so keep an eye out, as it’s one of our favourite of all the annual design events.

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