David Wiseman's Radial Branch chandelier above a unique historical desk and stool by Wendell Castle. David Wiseman's unique Collage Chinoiserie paneled wall installation in plaster and porcelain appears in the background. Image courtesy of Joe Kramm/R & Company.

Design Miami/Basel will kick off in Switzerland on Tuesday, June 16, continuing the tenth anniversary celebration that began in Miami last December.  Launched in 2005, Design Miami/ quickly emerged as the premier venue for collecting, exhibiting, and discussing collectible design thanks to its inimitable exhibitor list, museum-quality offerings, and innovative programming. Design Miami/’s two fairs, which run alongside the monumental Art Basel fairs in Miami each December and in Basel each June, bring together the most influential collectors, gallerists, designers, curators, and critics from around the world.

Conoid Room Divider by George Nakashima, 1989. Courtesy of Moderne Gallery.

According to Kim Hostler and Juliet Burrows, the founders of Hostler Burrows in New York, “We have been exhibiting with Design Miami/ since its inaugural show...Design Miami/ features only the best, both in terms of the prestige of the fair's featured galleries and the quality of the objects on display. Also, that those objects appear in wonderful diversity - from modern, to contemporary, to vintage - Is another specialty of this fair.” Evan Snyderman, the Principal of R & Company, another New York gallery that has been exhibiting at the fair since its inception, adds, Design Miami/Basel is one of the most significant design fairs in the world, in part due to the long history of its ‘big sister’ show Art Basel, which has been bringing collectors from around the world to its gates for over forty years. Design Miami/Basel has established itself as a must-see second stop for collectors visiting Art Basel and is considered one of the premiere destinations for seeing the best design objects from the top tier of international galleries. The scale of the booths and the great lengths the galleries go to in presenting their work is unmatched.”

Design Miami/’s stellar reputation, enthusiastic audience, and stunning offerings continue to draw new exhibitors to Basel. Robert Aibel, the founder and director of Philadelphia’s Moderne Gallery, has exhibited at Design Miami/ for the past three years, but this is his first time making the trip to Basel. He said, “Design Miami/ has a very knowledgeable clientele that brings a great deal of energy and excitement to the fair. I look forward to renewing connections with existing European clients and making new connections with potential European clients.”

Period bedroom suite by Joaquim Tenreiro, Brazil, 1950s. Courtesy of Joe Kramm/R & Company.

But Design Miami/Basel is much more than a marketplace for design. Its exceptional programming, which includes collaborations between designers and design institutions, panels, lectures, and  commissions, has helped establish the fair as an innovative design hub, broadening awareness of modern and contemporary design, fueling the market for collectible design, and helping to create an educated and active audience. Among this year’s programming highlights is Design at Large -- a section of the fair dedicated to presenting large-scale works of historical and contemporary design that transcend the traditional gallery booth. This year’s Design at Large, which was curated by the real estate magnate, restaurateur, hotel entrepreneur, and collector, André Balazs, centers on the theme of twentieth and twenty-first century architectural expression, including demountability, modularity, and environmental awareness. Balazs’ monumental presentation will include a prefabricated filling station designed by Jean Prouvé, a nomadic folly imagined by Edouard François, Shigeru Ban’s elegant and light-infused paper teahouse, and a sculptural troglodyte pool house created by Atelier Van Lieshout.

High chest of drawers by David Ebner, 2012. Courtesy of Moderne Gallery.

Exhibitors at Design Miami/Basel will present twentieth and twenty-first century furniture, lighting, and objets d’art. Hostler Burrows, which is known for its commitment to the integrity and superb craftsmanship of mid-twentieth century Nordic design, recently expanded their program to include contemporary works by international artists. According to Hostler and Burrows, “Our booth will feature works by experimental ceramic sculptors Kristina Riska and Maren Kloppmann alongside ceramics by Berndt Friberg and carpets my Märta Måås Fjetterström.” At R & Company’s booth, visitors can catch a glimpse of a site-specific installation created by the German toy maker and designer Renate Müller. According to Snyderman, “For our booth in Basel she created a fantasy world of architectural proportions in soft sculptural materials that is inhabited by her signature ‘Therapeutic Toy’ animals in new ‘Magic Horse’ and ‘Dream Pony’ styles. Müller's installation will occupy about a third of our booth. We are also showing a period bedroom suite designed by Joaquim Tenreiro in the 1950s for a major residential commission in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The group of works includes the original bed, dressers and side tables.” R & Company’s booth will also include a plaster wall relief by the Los Angeles-based designer David Wiseman, which ties into his current solo exhibition in New York, as well as a massive Radial Branch chandelier by Wiseman. “These beautiful works are being paired with a unique maple desk by Wendell Castle from 1979 and matching stool from 1980. New, one of a kind objects from the Haas Brothers and Thaddeus Wolfe will round out the booth design,” says Snyderman. He added, “Our vision is to show the range, not just of the gallery, but of the design market in general. We prefer to show major iconic and historical works alongside exciting contemporary work by designers who are just beginning their careers. The juxtaposition is what inspires us.” At Moderne Gallery’s booth, Aibel will present a carefully curated selection of the best of the American Studio movement, including rare and important works by George Nakashima, Harry Bertoia,  Wharton Esherick, Wendell Castle, David Ebner, and ceramics by Estella Halper.

Other must-see galleries at Design Miami/Basel include Dansk Mobelkunst Gallery (Copenhagen/Paris), dealers of rare, original works of Danish furniture created between 1920 and 1970; Friedman Benda (New York), specialists in art and design from the postwar era to the present day; Galerie Patrick Seguin (Paris), champions of French Modernists such as Jean Prouvé, Charlotte Perriand, Pierre Jeanneret, Le Corbusier, and Jean Royère; and  Magen H Gallery (New York), dealers of sculpture, decorative arts, architecture and ceramics, with a particular emphasis on French postwar designers.

Design Miami/Basel will remain open to the public through Sunday, June 21, 2015.