As of today, May 18, I have flown almost 30K miles in the last three months! This is definitely a personal record, and I am pretty sure I have “time zone whiplash.” I goggled it and no results, so apparently I’m the first one to coin that term.
I enjoy creating new concepts! It’s what I live for to be honest. All the trips I’ve taken as a representative of Classic Exhibits in 2014 have reinforced that passion: from Dusseldorf for EuroShop in February, to Vegas for EXHIBITOR in March, and now NYC for the FIT Exhibition Design thesis presentations.
Can we talk about EuroShop for a second? How inspiring were the shapes, patterns, and designs that we saw there! It was amazing to see it in person, and I hope the pics I posted to our blog gave you the feeling you were walking the show halls right next to me. Several of you mentioned you felt that way when I saw you at EXHIBITOR, and it was a sincere honor to hear that feedback.
EuroShop Photos and Videos:
What stood out to me most from our EuroShop trip was the extreme contrast between the innovative designs at the show, and the Gothic cathedral in Cologne which Mel and I visited on our day off (we climbed all 533 steps to the top). Lest you think I don’t appreciate historical design, let me state for the record that I fell in love with art history so much I actually minored in it in college. I studied abroad multiple times and was lucky to study art and architecture and visit many cathedrals throughout Europe, and they are truly works of functional and beautiful art. From there I could have easily followed a career in teaching, curating, or even designing museum exhibitions…and really enjoyed it. But I’m so glad I did not go down that road, because what I do as an Exhibit Designer is focused on the future not the past. It’s about pushing limits, creating new trends, coming up with crazy ideas that might not have been possible to construct in the past, and using new technologies to make them a physical reality!
We’re so privileged that you, our distributors, put confidence in our Classic Design Department to help your clients push their booth spaces to ever advancing levels of design innovation. Mark my words, someday design students will have required reading about the important contributions of exhibit designers to the advancement of design as a whole!
Fashion Institute of Technology
Speaking of design studies, on Friday May 16, I was a guest judge for the Capstone event at my alma mater, FIT in New York City. It’s the only master’s degree program specifically for Exhibition Design. Capstone is a great event, very well attended each year by leaders in our industry, where the current crop of students present their thesis projects in preparation to graduate and join us in the working world. The program has come a long way since I graduated in 2007, and it’s very much because of the amazing director Brenda Cowan. I could write a whole blog about what her mentoring has meant to me.
The student work was worth the trip across country! I’m so amazed at the level of creativity, the conceptualizing ability of the students. Exhibition design is so interdisciplinary, involving graphic/industrial/interior design, in addition to all the research and planning that go into a project, AND the final presentation is a work of art itself! It brought me back to the days of two hours of sleep each night for weeks on end. It’s an intense program, but these students can be proud of what they’ve accomplished.
Congratulations to each one. Being an exhibit designer is something to be excited about. And not only that, it’s important work. We can look forward to many good things from these newly minted exhibit designers!