DesignMarch In Reykjavik

Arts & Culture

DesignMarch showcases the best of the Icelandic design scene every year

The month of March is when Icelanders celebrate local design and fashion, thanks to festivals such as the Reykjavik Fashion Festival and DesignMarch. The latter has been an annual event for five years now and this year's DesignMarch will be the biggest one yet. DesignMarch showcases the best of the local design scene alongside exciting international names and is without a doubt Iceland's most important annual design festival. You'll get to see everything, fashion, furniture, architecture and food design. Over the course of four days there will be hundreds of openings, exhibitions, workshops and events going on in Reykjavík. 

The festival this year opens on Thursday 14th with a day of inspiring talks by internationally renowned designers and local design thinkers. They will answer any question you might have aboug creativity and design, and discuss their work. You can experience the magic at the National Theater of Iceland if you pay the entrance fee. The fee includes a day of lectures and panels, morning coffee and a light lunch. Among speakers this year are Inge Druckrey, a graphic designer with over 40 years of experience, Maja Kuzmanovich, the founder of FoAM, Juliet Kinchin, a curator in the Department of Architecture and Design at MoMA. Last but not least will be Eley Kishimoto, a London based fashion and design company run by husband and wife duo Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto. . On Friday DesignMatch brings Icelandic designers, Scandinavian producers and retailers around the same table at the Nordic House where local designers get a chance to present their ideas to buyers. 


Photo: Marino Thorlacius, courtesy of DesignMarch

The town fair takes place on Saturday and is the main attraction for the general public with pop-up-markets, exhibitions and hundreds of events organized downtown. Reykjavík turns into a huge venue for design and there is something going on everywhere. In the evening, Iceland Design Centre hosts the annual closing party, an event not to be missed. Sunday is the perfect day for winding down, relaxing, sleeping in and breathing in the clean Atlantic air. It is also ideal to take a leisurely walk downtown to cover the things you missed on the days before, with many of the exhibitions still going on. Here is the full program. As you can see, there is a lot to choose from. 

DesignMarch showcases the best of the Icelandic design scene every year. Fresh, exciting, exotic and under the radar, during DesignMarch you will see what is going on and meet all the local designers you admire or are excited about, along with a handful of the most interesting international names. The scene is small and intimate, so you will get up close and personal wth everyone involved. Let's all celebrate the creativity together. 

S by Marcos Zotes, courtesy of DesignMarch

DesignMarch has an online blog that features news and information about the festival.

This year's DesignMarch festival identity by Jónas Valtýsson and Ármann Agnarsson features a real wooden grid that forms the letters "HönnunarMars" (Icelandic for DesignMarch). The piece was built by the artists themselves in collaboration with designer Hlynur Axelsson. The grid was then photographed by Marino Thorlacius in several locations around Reykjavík. Jónas and Agnar say that DesignMarch is like an empty canvas set up for the local designers to draw on. The structure was then torn apart and four letters where handed over to four different designers and design teams to work on, and one letter a week was shared on DesignMarch's website. The designer who received letters to decorate were Mundi, Marcos Sotes, Hafsteinn Júlíusson and Vík Prjónsdóttir. 




N by Vík PrjónsdóttirM by Mundi

On DesignMarch's website you'll find a guide to the design-wise hotels, restaurant and galleries. Among those mentioned are Epal, Kraum, Farmers Market, Forréttabarinn, Kaffibarinn, KEX hostel and Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina. Don't forget to check the event calendar regularly. 

H by HAF, courtesy of DesignMarch