Manila FAME showcases the country’s finest designs

KENNETHCOBONPUE staged this special setting that gives a ‘sense of theater’ using spunbonded fabric.

KENNETHCOBONPUE’s Hive gives a ‘sense of theater’ using spunbonded fabric.

B-Luxe Chair by ITO KISH.

B-Luxe Chair by ITO KISH: Best Product Design for Furniture at the Katha Awards.

Manila FAME proves once again that it is the country’s premier design and lifestyle event as it showcased a host of finely crafted home, fashion, and holiday products that could attest that the Philippines is indeed an ideal sourcing destination in Asia for design-driven products.

As the signature event of the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), Manila FAME drew a number of local and foreign buyers who happily sourced for designer products in the four-day trade show held recently at the SMX Convention Center.

“We do not just follow trends; we set them. Manila FAME continues to inspire with a strong design statement on what is design-forward, popular, artisanal, and soulful. It’s a design experience like no other,” said Rosvi Gaetos, executive director of CITEM.

The Calli-Ideal Design bag won the Katha Award for Best Product Design in Fashion. (Photo by Jas Carandang)

The Calli-Ideal Design bag won the Katha Award for Best Product Design in Fashion. (Photo by Jasfrey Carandang)

In each show edition of Manila FAME, hundreds of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the home, holiday décor, and fashion industries are continually given a platform to promote their export-quality products to the world market.

For its 60th edition this October, Manila FAME featured products that were crafted according to the ‘design stories’ of Soulcrafts (heritage crafts), Luxe (luxury items) and Gen C (Millennial products), as it aimed to cater to the needs and interests of all audiences.

Event highlights were the Design Philippines Scenography, ‘Be Our Guest’: A Table Accessories Showcase, Manila Wear, NeoTextiles Philippines, Red Box, OTOP Marketplace, and the International Hall.

Under the creative direction of Budji Layug, the Design Philippines Scenography featured the latest designs from a collection crafted by designers and exhibitors of the Design for Exports program, as well as, choice pieces from brands under Design Philippines and Manila Wear. Designers Eric Paras and Stanley Ruiz collaborated with Layug in designing the Design Philippines installation, which featured a giant salakab made of bamboo to set the tone for the special setting made of select design-forward pieces from a gathering of the country’s brightest creative talents.

Design Philippines Scenography designed by Manila FAME creative director Budji Layug, in collaboration with designers Eric Paras and Stanley Ruiz.

Design Philippines Scenography designed by Manila FAME creative director Budji Layug, in collaboration with designers Eric Paras and Stanley Ruiz.

Detlef Klatt's table accessories showcase was inspired by East and West street scenes.

Detlef Klatt’s table accessories showcase was inspired by East and West street scenes.

A tabletops setting titled “Be Our Guest” highlighted an eye-catching, ready-to-buy collection of table accessories developed under the Design for Exports Program by German master florist and designer Detlef Klatt, in collaboration with 17 manufacturers who are experts in working with materials such as abaca (a plant fiber), ceramic, wood, metal, capiz, mother of pearl, and other natural materials. On three 13-meter-long tables, over 800 table pieces such as baskets and bowls, trays and centerpieces, and tablecloths and placemats were laid out in an extraordinary presentation – a play of patterns, textures, and shapes that masterfully blended the table, products, and surrounding elements to create still-life compositions, as inspired by the street scenes of Berlin, New York, Tokyo, and Manila.

Unique fashion pieces combined artisanal crafts with contemporary sensibilities in Manila Wear.

Unique fashion pieces combined artisanal crafts with contemporary sensibilities in Manila Wear.

Fashionistas had a visual sampling of unique fashion pieces that combined artisanal crafts with contemporary sensibilities in Manila Wear. International fashion icon Josie Natori curated the presentation and teamed up with fashion desginers Cesar Gaupo, Lulu Tan-Gan, and JC Buendia.

NeoTextiles Philippines promoted the country’s indigenous fibers and textiles in support of local weaving communities. Designers Amina Aranaz-Alunan and Olivia d’Aboville provided new design directions to the participating textile manufacturers that created contemporary and versatile textiles and products for home and fashion.

Red Box Home Scenography presented the works of young designers Rachelle Dagñalan, Lilianna Manahan, Leeroy New, and Joseph Rastrullo who were matched with local manufacturers to create innovative products with a unique design sensibility. Red Box is a design development program of CITEM which aims to create the next generation of Philippine design talents.

The Cordillera Autonomous Region (CAR) Pavilion at Manila FAME. CAR is one of CITEM's LGU partner for the event.

The Cordillera Autonomous Region (CAR) Pavilion at Manila FAME, designed by Imelda Datul and Romulo Tapel II of DekoStyle Product Design Services.

Designer Rey Soliven (right) with Tap's Handmade Products owners Boy and Tessie Policarpio.

Designer Rey Soliven (right) with Tap’s Handmade Products owners Boy and Tessie Policarpio at the OTOP Marketplace.

The One Town, One Product (OTOP), a priority program of the Bureau of Domestic Trade (BDT), showcased handcrafted pieces by skilled Filipino craftsmen whose skills have been passed on through generations of artisans. OTOP manufacturers teamed up with senior designers Viña Domingo-Roy and Rey Soliven, who both mentored Dagñalan and Rastrullo, to produce the latest collection from the regions.

Dong up Lim and Seok Hun Lee of Gracebell from Korea. Their paper products were a hit among the Filipinos. (Photo courtesy of Jas Carandang)

Dong up Lim and Seok Hun Lee of Grace Bell from South Korea. Their paper products were a big hit among the Filipinos. (Photo by Jasfrey Carandang)

Foreign exhibitors of home and fashion from Asia and the Pacific presented their export-quality products such as furniture, home décor, garments, fashion accessories, and scents in the International Hall. Participating countries were Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Taiwan.

Manila FAME is one of the longest-running trade shows in the Asia Pacific, and is the only trade event in the country approved by the Union des Foires Internationales (UFI), the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry.

The 61st show edition, which promises to be bigger and better than the previous edition, will be held at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City on March 13-16, 2015.

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‘Starchitect’ Lyndon Neri to speak in Design Talks

Lyndon Neri, Wallpaper* Magazine 2014 Designer of the Year and ‘starchitect’ (star architect).

Lyndon Neri, Wallpaper* Magazine 2014 Designer of the Year and ‘starchitect’ (star architect).

Wallpaper* Magazine 2014 Designer of the Year and ‘starchitect’ (star architect) Lyndon Neri is slated to speak in Design Talks at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex in Pasay City on March 14, in celebration of Design Week Philippines, a multi-faceted platform that brings together creative visionaries from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in a series of programs and events that celebrate design and artistry.

Wallpaper* Magazine is one of the best design magazines in the world, and its design awards are prestigious and much-awaited, boasting of a roster of A-list judges who include celebrity Victoria Beckham, restaurateur and interior designer Michael Chow, Wallpaper’s 2013 Designer of the Year Ron Gilard, screenwriter, actor, director and producer Spike Jonze; renowned architect and founder of Morphosis Thom Mayne, and A-list art dealer Thaddaeus Ropac.

Spearheaded by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotions arm of the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Design Talks is a potent avenue for industry practitioners, design aficionados, and academics to gain insights and inspiration from the knowledge and experience of design icons from all over the world. It is the banner event of Design Week Philippines, a bi-annual design celebration which aims to position the Philippines as Asia’s premiere design destination.

Founder of the Shanghai-based Neri&Hu Design and Research Office, Neri will speak on multi-disciplinary design and ‘glocalization’ (globalization and localization) in design. He will discuss extensively his practice’s core philosophy: the incorporation of multi-disciplinary design disciplines to traditional ones to achieve product development fashioned for both local and international markets. This unification of concepts is aptly called glocalization, where a product or service is developed and distributed globally, but is also customized to accommodate the user or consumer in a local market.

“CITEM is honored to have Lyndon Neri as guest speaker in Design Talks. We are certain that he will share valuable insights that will inspire the next generation of design specialists. His presence in Design Talks will surely be inspirational and refreshing,” said CITEM executive director Rosvi Gaetos.

Neri’s design firm is an inter-disciplinary international architectural design practice that was selected as one of the Design Vanguards by Architectural Record (US) in 2009, won AR Awards for Emerging Architecture 2010 by Architectural Review (UK), and was the INSIDE Festival Overall Winner in 2011. In 2013, Neri was inducted into US Interior Design Hall of FAME with wife and partner Rossana Hu and was selected as AD 100 top talents in architecture and interior design by Architectural Digest China. This year, Neri and Hu were announced as 2014 Designer of the Year by the UK Wallpaper.

The multi-awarded creative visionary, who was selected in 2006 by I.D. Magazine as one of the 40 prominent designers globally shaping Hong Kong and China, received his master’s degree in architecture at Harvard University and his bachelor’s degree in architecture at the University of California. Along with his wife Rossana, he was a founding partner of the Shanghai-based retail concept store Design Republic that offers products created by the world’s best design talents. This store earned the Perspective Awards 2013 by Perspective Magazine (China) and the Design For Asia (DFA) Best Design of Greater China.

Aside from Neri, other guest speakers tapped by CITEM to speak in Design Talks include Plus63 Design Co. co-founder Dan Matutina, DM9 Jayme Syfu chairman and chief creative officer Merlee Jayme, and PGAA Creative Design principal Paulo Alcazaren.

Design Week Philippines is organized by CITEM, in partnership with the Design Center of the Philippines (DCP), Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT), National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), and the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP). It will be concurrent with the 59th edition of Manila FAME, the country’s premiere design and lifestyle event, which will be held at the SMX Convention Center on March 14-17.