Design Miami/ director Ambra Medda will leave the organisation in June, five years after co-founding the limited-edition design fair.
Medda will step down after the Design Miami/Basel fair in June but will continue to act as creative consultant to the organisation and serve on its selection committees.
A search is already underway for her replacement.
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Design Miami/ to announce new Director in June
Design Miami/ today announced that June’s Design Miami/ Basel will be Ambra Medda's final fair as Director. A search has commenced for the new Director, who will assume responsibilities for the Design Miami/ presentation in Miami in 2010. Medda will maintain a presence as a creative consultant and serve on the gallery and selection committees for the Designer of the Year and Designers of the Future awards. The news marks the five year anniversary of Design Miami/ and the 10th show overall, proving that the ambitious concept - to create a global forum for the design community - has achieved maturity.
Ambra Medda cites Design Miami as a highly rewarding collaboration. “With our upcoming show, Design Miami/ will have accomplished what we’ve envisioned since the beginning. Our goal was to develop a global platform for the design community, a forum sharing culturally significant experiences and commercial opportunities, and we’ve succeeded. I am tremendously proud of what we have accomplished in the past five years.”
Craig Robins, the Miami-based property developer and collector who owns Design MIami/ in partnership with Art Basel parent company MCH Group, told The Art Newspaper "When the show began, we believed we were tapping into a global phenomenon - a burgeoning interest in collecting design, and a craving for this kind of forum. But the success we've enjoyed during Ambra's six years as Director, the partnerships that the fair has created with companies like HSBC Private Bank, Audi, Swarovski, Moet Hennessy, Fendi and W Hotels, surpassed our expectations, and she did an extraordinary job of building a business from scratch. Our strong executive team will continue to expand the show's reach while maintaining the curatorial standards of excellence that have defined Design Miami/”
From its inception, Design Miami/ and Design Miami/ Basel quickly attracted leading galleries from around the world, including Galerie Patrick Seguin, Galerie Kreo, Nilufar, Galerie Downtown-François Laffanour, Dansk Møbelkunst Gallery Jousse Entreprise and R 20th Century. The first Designer of the Year award was presented to Zaha Hadid in 2005, with Marc Newson, Tokujin Yoshioka, the Campana Brothers and Maarten Baas following suit. The Designers of the Future award, presented annually in Basel, has proven to be a harbinger of critical and commercial success for young talents, initially singling out Established & Sons and subsequently Swedish collective Front (2007); Julia Lohmann, Max Lamb, Martino Gamper and Kramm/Weishaar (2008); and Nacho Carbonell, Peter Marigold, Raw Edges, and Tomas Libertiny (2009).
The launch of Design Miami/ in 2005 was initially seen as an experiment: Could limited edition design be presented alongside art as collectible material and hold its own? Despite the economic volatility of recent years, and the initially small size of the market, the show, presented twice yearly concurrently with powerhouse Art Basel and Art Basel Miami Beach, quickly established the vibrancy and dynamism of the market.