MOST design show goes global as Tom Dixon steps back
News: industrial designer Tom Dixon has handed over the MOST design show he founded in Milan two years ago to former employee Will Sorrell, who plans to expand the brand to Istanbul and New York in 2014.
Tom Dixon, who instigated MOST in 2012 as a new epicentre for design during the annual Milan design week, has now passed the brand to Will Sorrell, son of London Design Festival chairman and co-founder Sir John Sorrell.
"I've taken over the running of the show - they've handed the brand over to me," said Sorrell, who previously managed the show as a member of Dixon's team. "Obviously [Tom Dixon] is not an events company, it's a design and manufacturing company, so we were always talking about what would happen after the first couple of years."
Dixon will stay closely involved with the brand and will exhibit at next year's show in Milan. "They are also putting in a large contribution in terms of giving me support and advice," said Sorrell.
He plans to expand MOST in 2014 to host events coinciding with the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) in New York and Istanbul Design Week.
"I thought there was room for a bigger satellite show [in New York] that's a little more concise and more focussed on European brands," he explained, adding that he'd like to see the city come together under a more coherent umbrella like the London Design Festival - which was conceived by his father with Ben Evans in 2003.
"New York design week is a very disjointed thing, not to say there's not good design there but there're a lot of events," Will Sorrell said. "I'd love to see the New York events come together and create a solid design week or design festival."
Istanbul, meanwhile, represents the meeting of east and west in design for the company. "It might be a good opportunity for brands who are looking at Western Europe more, to explore internationally," he told us. "I think we've got to stop thinking of design as being in Western Europe and North America - it's a completely global profession with people and ideas moving all around the place, so I think it's time for people in the western world to take other designers more seriously."
MOST has been located among the steam trains, planes and ships of Milan's Museum of Science and Technology in a former monastery for the past two years, and Sorrell says he wants MOST to continue to present design in unexpected venues. "It's great to combine a mix of selling design shows and creative projects - like Dezeen Studio and Faye Toogood's installation - in a non trade-show environment," he said. "The last thing you want to do is go to another trade show."
Will Sorrell studied at New York University and University of the Arts London, before working for The British Council and his parents' charity The Sorrell Foundation. He joined Tom Dixon as project manager for MOST in 2009.
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