The Belgian design scene is vast and diverse. Belgian institutions are always at the forefront of supporting the people, new projects and products that make our country dynamic and unique.
The roots of BELGIUM IS DESIGN trace to Milan. In 2006, initiatives led by Belgian institutions that promote design made their début during Milan Design Week. They first collaborated the year after, using the name [les belges] for a shared communication. In 2011 they decided to exhibit in a single location and communicate as one for the first time. They sought a new name for this project, one that was stronger and more impactful on the international stage.
Belgium is Design: a statement that unites all of the partners and which still holds true after ten years!
The name was taken after the Design Vlaanderen (now known as Flanders DC) had presented its 6th Design Triennial at the Grand-Hornu museum (Mons – B), which was entitled BELGIUM IS DESIGN in automn of 2010. This brought together Lise Coirier as the curator, Stefan Schöning as the set designer and Raf Thienpont as the graphic designer.
Since then, BELGIUM IS DESIGN has been revamped with a brand-new identity, which was created by the Brussels-based studio Kidnap Your Designer. This identity is firmly rooted in Belgian culture. It recalls the Alfphabet font, a symbolic fusion of linguistic diversity that has been used on the country’s road signs for a long time.
2011, BELGIUM IS DESIGN WAS BORN!
During the 2011 edition of Milan Design Week, Belgian design organisations decided to exhibit in a single location and communicate as one for the first time. They sought a new name for this project, one that was stronger and more impactful on the international stage: Belgium is Design was born.
The first Belgium is Design presence was at the prestigious Pinacoteca di Brera with the exhibition “Lightness: light and lightness in Belgian design” curated by Giovanna Massoni and organized by WBDM and Design Vlaanderen (now Flanders DC). Alongside, Designed in Brussels (now MAD, Home of Creators) showcased an overview of the 25 designers promoted with the 100% Designed in Brussels programme over the past 5 years.