- Words by Mr Nick Vinson, director of Vinson&Co
Design Miami/ describes itself as a global forum for design. It is a platform for both historically important and contemporary pieces. Last month, galleries from across the globe assembled for the design show's sister event in Basel to display their precious wares in the brand-new Herzog & de Meuron-designed halls of the Messe Basel.
Jetting in to view what was on offer - which included Maison des Jours Meilleurs, a 1956 prefabricated house by Mr Jean Prouvé (restored, shipped and then assembled inside the fairgrounds by Galerie Patrick Seguin) that sold within minutes - were collectors, industry chiefs, designers, architects and enthusiasts. Notable attendees included Mr Leonardo DiCaprio, Mr Peter Brant, Ms Stephanie Seymour, Mr Roman Abramovich and Mr Kanye West. The latter, well known to be a fashion, architect and design buff, provided an impromptu "listening party" for his new album Yeezus, complete with chairs by Mr Rick Owens, whose limited-edition design work was shown by Salon 94.
The galleries that make up the fair fall into two camps: those that deal in historical design - mainly 20th-century work from the likes of Messrs Prouvé, Jean Royère, Carlo Mollino, Alvar Aalto, Jean-Michel Frank, Mr Giò Ponti and Ms Eileen Gray - and those that "edit" works from contemporary talent and produce limited-edition collections usually comprising no more than 12 pieces.
Design Miami/, which runs alongside the Art Basel fair, also provides satellite exhibitions, special commissions and exposure opportunities for young talent. It is peppered with talks, tours and openings in and around the city - and plenty of dinners and parties. This year's even included a fire station's 20th birthday celebration. Yes, a fire station, albeit one of the first completed buildings by architect Ms Zaha Hadid, just minutes over the border in Germany at Vitra Campus.
Click through the slides, above, to see eight designs that really caught our attention.