Look back of Maison & Objet in January 2020, Paris, France

Maison&Objet 2020 last from January 17 to 21 at the Villepinte Exhibition Centre in Paris, demonstrated outstanding resilience. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, Maison & Object, which has been constantly reinventing itself past 25 years, managed to retain its magnetic attraction. Marking the event’s quarter century, this particular edition of the international trade fair for the decoration, design and lifestyle sector.

To herald the start of the brand new decade, Maison&Objet decided to dedicate both its 25th anniversary year editions to the same inspiring topic: (RE)GENERATION! The aim? Give visitors the chance to get to grips with the consumer behaviour displayed by generations Y and Z, which is both intriguing and unsettling in equal measure.

Assisted by style consultancy Nelly Rodi, the January edition explored the level of engagement these new meaning-driven consumers exhibit (with a specific itinerary flagging up eco-friendly brands having already been launched last year). The September edition, meanwhile, will turn the spotlight on how these digital natives are an augmented generation, raised on a diet of the Internet and social media.

The “What’s New?” exhibits staged by Elizabeth Leriche, François Bernard and François Delclaux also cleverly explored the way consumers are bringing meaning, nature and virtuous materials back into their homes – all themes close to the new generation’s heart.

This shift in consumer behaviour is something that was at the forefront of absolutely everyone’s minds. Starting with the Hotel and Restaurant trade, for whom Maison&Objet had put together a dedicated itinerary taking in everything from furnishings and tableware to cookware, lighting, textiles and fragrances, all addressing that industry’s specific needs in terms of safety standards, accessibility, solidity, etc

Something else that was new this time around was the opportunity for hoteliers, restaurateurs and interior designers to take part in over 300 business meetings with a selection of some hundred dedicated brands.

For 25 years, Maison&Objet, organised by SAFI (a subsidiary of Ateliers d’Art de France and RX France), has been engaging with and bringing together the international design, home decor and lifestyle communities. Maison&Objet’s trademark? Its unique ability to generate connections and accelerate business, both during trade fairs and via its digital platform, but also through its unique talent for highlighting trends that will excite and inspire the home decor world.

Maison&Objet’s mission is to reveal talent, spark connections and provide inspiration, both on- and off-line, thereby helping businesses grow. Through two yearly trade fairs for industry professionals and Paris Design Week, a public event in September that brings the creative energy of designers and brands together in the City of Light, Maison&Objet is the go-to platform for the entire interior design sector.

Unveiled in 2016, Maison&Objet and more, enables buyers and brands to continue their conversations all year round, launch collections and create connections beyond physical meetings. The weekly roundup of exciting new finds constantly stimulates business across the sector.

To take things even further, the Maison&Objet Academy now provides industry professionals with an exclusive web channel that broadcasts monthly content focusing on training and on deciphering market trends. Our social media platforms, meanwhile, keep all those design discoveries going by engaging daily with an active community of almost one million members on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Xing, WeChat and TiKTok. As the spearhead of Paris as the capital of creativity, Maison&Objet is a catalyst for positioning Paris as one of the world’s leading design centres.

The spring edition marked by dynamic international business, confirming the attractiveness of inspiring events. It was in a positive business climate once again that the doors of the decor, design and lifestyle fair, located at the Paris Nord Villepinte Exhibition Centre. Industry professionals from the home decor, design, crafts and lifestyle sectors were able to get together, meet at Maison&Objet to exchange ideas, make discoveries and sense market trends.

This edition of Maison&Objet Paris confirms the relevance of in-person event in a digital era, the fair remains a place to share unique experiences and memorable moments. It’s a breeding ground for proposals and innovations, which allows everyone to be moved and inspired and to tell their own stories.

All the senses were stimulated at this edition, which promised to reconnect us with a feeling of wonder, a feeling specific to design, whose mission is to go beyond functionality, and elevate us to ultimate Beauty. Maison&Objet allows all professionals to make discoveries, source products, and get inspired, so as to develop innovative merchandising that will appeal to new customers.

Rising talents and iconic design brands, young graduates and museum institutions, freshly launched design houses, artisans and designermakers with inspired and inspiring hands all flock to Paris to invent and showcase their vision of a desirable lifestyle. A lifestyle that is in harmony with nature, that leverages technology to bring people together, whilst drawing on traditional expertise that is handed down from generation to generation, bearing witness to the passing of time. Desirable Development helps strike that subtle and much longed for balance that sets us on the path of uninhibited revival.

The desire and inclination to reconnect in person were palpable, ranging from the most promising rising talents to the most highly acclaimed interior designers. It’s crucial for anyone working in the decoration and design sector to be able to discover and actually touch and feel new collections, Whilst clients were finally able to get up close and personal with products.

Building on the success of the city-based events held in parallel to the trade fairs in Paris-Nord Villepinte, Maison&Objet was launching a new “Decooff” itinerary taking in some of the French capital’s design showrooms, galleries and pop-up stores.

With 7 halls and Maison&Objet “Decooff” (a new itinerary in Paris that showcased nearly some tens prestigious showrooms), the fair has successfully brought together the entire industry, mixing loyal brands showcasing new products with carefully curated new brands worth noticing.

There was 2736 exhibitors participated in the exhibition, which included 609 new firms. According to the organiser’s estimates, the retail transactions completed by industry professionals over the course of the 5-day event stood at almost 2 billion euros. Maison&Objet’s impact could also be seen in the indirect economic effects it had across France. The trade fair generated pre-tax revenues of 145 million euros – including €100 million* for Paris and the surrounding area -, secured over 21 million* euros of VAT and raised half a million euros in tourist taxes, underscoring its ability to create value.

Design… and action!
For this edition, Ramy Fischler, September 2018’s Designer of the Year, put together an XXL installation designed to be a forwardlooking “trend incubator”. Five experienced actors spent the full five days improvising sketches that s(t)imulated day-to-day life in the various rooms of the home, using a kind of “design fiction” exercise to help conceptualise tomorrow’s behavioural trends. A dozen short films, which are currently being edited, will be shared over the coming months, inviting design specialists and the trade fair community to question or debate change within their market.

Designer of the Year: let there be light!
“Simplicity takes a lot of hard work”. That’s how Designer of the Year 2020 Michael Anastassiades, whose lighting designs were showcased at Maison&Objet, chose to present his craft. It was actually a kind of homecoming for this Cypriot designer, as it was at Maison&Objet that he first presented his eponymous brand back in 2007, after studying engineering and graduating with a Masters in Industrial Design from the Royal College of Art in London and then going on to set up his studio there in 1994.

Young Talents in the limelight
Constantly on the lookout for the global design scene’s rising stars, Maison&Objet came up trumps yet again with a carefully curated selection of six Rising Talents who, for once, all heralded from France. Hand-picked by a six-member jury, all experts in French design, Adrien Garcia, Julie Richoz, Laureline Galliot, Mathieu Peyroulet Ghilini, Natacha & Sacha and Wendy Andreu were the cream of this edition’s crop, and all showcased their creations at the event.

Staying true to its deep-seated desire to promote up-and-coming designers, Maison&Objet came up with the idea of also promoting rising Qatari talent at this particular edition, marking the start of the QatarFrance Year of Culture. That same strong belief in young design also led to the creation of a Chinese Design Award in partnership with the Chaoshang group, the inaugural edition of which was launched on December 8th 2019 in Shenzhen. On the other side of the world, Maison&Objet, Paris Design Week and NYCxDESIGN, the permanent New York platform dedicated to design, are also getting ready to organise joint exhibitions in the spring inspired by the trade fair’s Rising Talents.