Review of Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair 2014, Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair, was held from February 4 to 8, 2014. The Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair, the world’s foremost venue for Scandinavian design, the show’s maintained high standard, that it has a concentration of profiled companies in a manageable format, personal appeal and proximity to the designers. This year’s edition bubbled with energy and breathed optimism. Many exhibitors gave positive signals that the economy has turned.

The fair with a focus on both home and public environments, has a reputation as one of the most interesting design fairs in the world. It has the most comprehensive selection of furniture, office furnishings, lighting, design objects, textiles and other interior furnishing for both homes and public spaces. The fair also hosts Greenhouse, an excellent exhibit area for design students and independent designers.

The fair offers a fantastic opportunity to soak up the Nordic trends influencing the design scene both locally and globally at this very moment. All major Scandinavian brands are represented, with its uncompromisingly Scandinavian, and you see work here you won’t see at any other design fair in the world.

Visitors from all over the world come to Stockholmsmässan to see the latest trends in furniture and lighting, find the most comprehensive selection of Scandinavian furniture, office furnishings, design, textiles, lighting and other interior furnishings for both homes and public spaces. To meet up with like-minded and get inspired by the latest in Scandinavian design, with easy access to both designers and decision makers, get an overview of all that’s new and upcoming within the field of Scandinavian furniture and lighting design.

The 2014 edition of the fair had a total of 35 654 visits from 90 countries. There were 756 international visitors, which is about 27% of the trade visitors. There is continued great interest from the press and media, with a total of 1129 accredited media representatives, including 339 from abroad. The fair drew 5036 design enthusiasts from the public, compared 4745 last year.

Stockholmsmässan, which is Scandinavia’s largest exhibition and congress center, organized its first furniture fair in 1951. Since then the fair has grown into what is generally considered as one of the two top-notch furniture fairs in Europe. Today the fair attracts around 40,000 visitors from more than 60 countries and over 1,100 media representatives every year, and around 750 companies exhibit their furniture, lighting and textile products. The largest exhibitor nations, apart from Sweden, are Denmark, Finland and Norway, and usually around 80 percent of all exhibitors come from Scandinavia.

Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair is the world’s leading event for Scandinavian furniture and lighting design. Domestic and international visitors find the most comprehensive selection of Scandinavian furniture, office furnishings, design, textiles, lighting and other interior furnishings for both homes and public spaces.The fair’s exhibitions feature a lot of wood and visitors was able to listen to lectures by internationally acclaimed designers and architects.

During Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair, Stockholmsmässan’s 70,000 square meters are full to bursting point with the latest innovations within interior design and lighting for both homes and public spaces. New products, new materials, new knowledge, new trends, new business, new contacts and new environmental and technological solutions are displayed in a both informative and inspirational manner. The exhibitions are of the highest rate and the seminar program is extensive. The first days of the fair are restricted to professional visitors while the concluding Saturday also is open to the general public.

The fair is full to bursting point with the latest innovations within interior design and lighting for both homes and public spaces. New products, new materials, new knowledge, new trends and new environmental and technological solutions are displayed in a both informative and inspirational manner.

The same week as Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair, Stockholm Design Week also takes place, presenting more than 100 high-profile design events at various venues around the city. This makes Stockholm a must-place to be for purchasers, architects, designers and journalists in February. The Stockholm Design Week has developed into a melting pot where just about everyone in anyway connected to or interested in Scandinavian design meet and thrive, bringing home new impulses, contacts and inspiration.

The Stockholm Furniture Fair showcases the latest trends and innovative new products in design, and acts as a melting pot for buyers, architects, designers, press and influencers from around the world. New Nordic, Old Nordic, Soft Nordic, and Nordic Minimalism were all given floor space at the biggest event celebrating Scandinavian design, a furniture show that still represents Scandinavian craftsmanship.

The trends this year was about at the Fair were the prevalence of wood, muted colors, skins and updated classics. This annual furniture and lighting exhibition is the largest in Scandinavia, showcasing hundreds exhibitors including brands. Showcasing innovative product prototypes, the fair’s Greenhouse platform invites unknown and emerging designers and design schools from all over the world. The fair also coincides with Stockholm Design Week, which hosts over 100 design-related events throughout the city.

Guest of Honor: GamFratesi
One of the highlights at the fair is the Guest of Honour, a highly respected international designer or design group who is asked to create an installation in the fair’s entrance hall. Other highlights are the Greenhouse section, where new talents are given the chance to show their prototypes and meet manufacturers from the furniture industry, and the Stockholm Design & Architecture Talks, the Fair’s forum for knowledge and discussions concerning design.

Gamfratesi named guest of honor at stockholm furniture & light fair 2014general view of ‘balance’ within the stockholm furniture & light fair’s main entrance hall. GamFratesi taking the challenge in which they have created ‘balance’, an installation of the danish-italian studio’s work, arranged in such a way that creates an equilibrium between life, work and play.

Design duo GamFratesi welcomed visitors to the Stockholm Furniture Fair with a petal-shaped mobile installation that echoed the work of sculptor Alexander Calder, suspended fabric florals from the ceiling of the Stockholmsmässan above a lounge area kitted out with their furniture. The installation emphasizes the movement of the fair’s visitors through the venue. In addition to being sculptures and room dividers, the elements are also sound absorbers, a feature which is invaluable in such a large space. Elements hung from the ceiling of the enormous entrance hall, divide it into smaller, more intimate lounge areas.

Dubbed “Balance”, the installation’s arrangement was designed to create an equilibrium between life, work and play. “For us, as for most people, each day is a struggle to find balance in life. the exhibition we have created at the stockholm furniture & light air is meant to remind us of that,” says stine gam and enrico fratesi of GamFratesi.

The Design Bar
The Design Bar, which is a mix between an exhibition and a top-class restaurant, forms a common area together with Stockholm Design & Architecture Talks. The Design Bar is located at the end of Cedar Hall in a new knowledge area that also includes the stage for the trade show’s seminar program, Stockholm Design Talks, and Materialbiblioteket’s exhibition. This year the Design Bar into a top-class restaurant created by designer Jens Fager and chef Tommy Myllymäki.

Be inspired at Greenhouse – where seeds grow and wild ideas thrive. This is one of Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair’s most popular and written-about areas. Here, design schools and promising young designers from around the world compete for the chance to present their work and meet future partners, manufacturers and the media.

The very talented duo of Farvash Razavi and Micheal Bastion and their label Very Very Gold. Curiosity and adventure permeates their creations, fueled by Razavi’s reputation as one of Scandinavia’s true masters of materials. Tables formed of gold cubes look like they’ve been built by opulent bulldozers and contain 3D holographic film within. The duo’s Mirror Mirror Lamp resembled the gleaming face of a Caribbean steel drum, polished to a high shine and with a strip of halogen slicing across its face.

Elsewhere in the Greenhouse was the Kosmos Project, a studio set up by Ewa Bochen and Maciej Jelski. On display was a glorious riot of color in the firm’s collection which interpreted the relationship between the civilized and the wild. For the Collective Unconsciousness collection, inspiration was found in Polish folklore; depictions of a wolf, bear and bird of prey are used to create repeats for rugs, bent-metal wall hangings and other home adornments.

Oslo’s Kunsthogskolan (National Academy of Art) took a different, more cerebral route for its installation. Refreshingly, the students left their work in Oslo and installed a large, sheer-fabric cube into which the visitor stepped. Beamed onto the cube’s translucent innards were short films showing each designer talking about their work and influences in a series entitled “What does the box say?”.

Twelve, the area for Nordic established designers, where 12 established designers showed what was typical of their design language and conceptual vision, attracted much positive attention.

1, 2, TREE
The exhibition contains works and objects by several of Scandinavia’s most recognized designers and architects. These include Daniel Svahn, David Franzén, Folkform, Lars Stensö, Gustav Persson, Julia Gamborg Nielsen and Siren Elise Wilhelmsen.

Since it was founded in 2003, Architonic has established itself as the world’s leading resource for architecture and design, currently providing information more than 140,000 selected products by 1,200 manufacturers and 1,300 architectural projects.

Designboom Mart
The traveling market returns to Stockholm for the sixth time, this is their 33rd exhibition! 40 international design talents display their latest products. High-profile design in a charming street market environment. More than 200 products are sold at symbolic prices.

Ethical Council
The Council was formed on the initiative of Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair and industry organization TMF. During the fair, the Ethical Council, with its motto “No Copy”, will be available to assist exhibiting companies with advice and measures related to copy issues.

Rojo Show
Spain has become a something of a second home for hundreds of thousands of northerners, and we have therefore become very familiar with this country’s culture. The ROJO exhibition displays a representative selection of contemporary Spanish design. Objects that have been designed and produced in Spain and thereafter become popular on the international home interior design market.

The unique Swedish furniture
TMF (The Swedish Federation of Wood and Furniture) highlights the value of Swedish design and the furniture industry’s unique ability to join traditional craftsmanship with modern production techniques. The Swedish furniture industry is a world leader in quality while at the same time taking care of the environment and being socially responsible. TMF shows how the industry is working to offer today’s design furniture, for both public spaces and the home.

The fair’s forum for knowledge and discussions within the area of design and architecture is visited by influential guests, listening to the market, talking to knowledgeable people within the business, and drawing inspiration from leading agents in the industry. Stockholm Design Talks offers many interesting discussions and lectures with high-profile guests from around the world. With the theme, Scandinavia Now, Stockholm Design Talks is striving to become even more up-to-date and reflect current trends in the field of design and architecture.

Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair fills Stockholmsmässan’s offers a multiple inspirational exhibitions and an extensive program of seminars. This year the program is more extensive than ever before with the introduction of, among other things, Stockholm Design Talks– a new forum for knowledge and discussions about furniture and interior design. The talks seminar series also included several packed talks under the theme “Moving Forward”. The discussions were informed and very interesting every day, with topics ranging from the latest on the Scandinavian design scene to how to create a living furniture collection in 2014.