Designers look ahead to 2018 after fruitful visit to Index
The sun set on the INDEX Design Series forest after a four day showcase of the best in international and local design at the Middle East’s biggest interior design exhibition. Industry figures from 108 different countries gathered at the Dubai World Trade Centre last month to meet, network and do business with more than 1,000 exhibitors from across the world.
Set amongst a lush green environment, the show – held in tandem with workspace, the region’s premier office furniture gathering, and Middle East Covering, which unites the leading companies in surface design – also hosted a pool of influential Design Talks speakers, ranging from former British Designer of the Year Bethan Gray, to Jazia Aldhanhani – CEO of Dubai Design & Fashion Council – and Lindsay Miller, Managing Director at Dubai Design District.
Fashion-cum-interiors innovator Henry Holland featured too. He said of INDEX: “The show was super-impressive. I really liked the theme for this year, Design for the Senses. The luxury pavilion was amazing – so many different international designers and such an amazing array of design talents.
“This was the first time I’ve been to Dubai for four years and it has changed so much. The speed at which it’s developing and growing in both culture and architecture is really interesting. There’s such an amazing blank canvas here – it’s such an exciting place to be.”
Paul Murphy attended INDEX in his role as design director with Drawlink Group. He explained: “We attend INDEX for a few reasons. We’re always looking for new sources for materials, ways to improve what we’re doing and to keep ourselves knowledgeable. People come to our offices regularly to show us products but to be here where they can express themselves in their own way is important and allows us to diversify our opinions and diversify our thought process. It’s an interesting show that allows people to express themselves and allows us to manage ourselves and find the right products.”
As an exhibitor, John Raymond – general manager of the project division at M.A.H.Y Khoory, used INDEX as a platform to meet the buyers he wants to invest in his kitchen range.
He said: “INDEX is the place contractors and consultants come shopping for materials. That was very important for us in attending. We will return as we’ve found that a lot of the contacts we made have been very positive. There’s no one who came just to look into the stand – they were all serious buyers and business owners.”
With more than one in every three exhibitors already confirming their attendance for INDEX 2018 – which takes place earlier in the year, March 26-29 – the four-day exhibition has been heralded as a success.
Samantha Kane-Macdonald, event director at INDEX, said: “Our show this year had a genuine buzz throughout it – a real sense of beautiful, exciting, organic design coming to life. Many factors contributed to that sensation: our live interactive design features, the green theme, the quality of our Design Talks speakers and content, welcoming more high-end designers than ever before. It was a really special week and we can’t wait to get going for 2018.”