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San Diego Design Week Seeks Role As Catalyst for Creatives – Stateside or in Baja


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The Villagran project in Tijuana, which will be part of a Thursday tour during Design Week. Photo credit: Screen shot, sddesignweek.org

San Diego Design Week opens Wednesday with a reception at Mingei International Museum, including the premiere of the “Projecting Futures” exhibition.

The night features an “immersive motion graphic experience” to showcase the work of designers from throughout the San Diego-Tijuana region, and live performances from the San Diego Youth Symphony, Youth Ballet and Animal Cracker Conspiracy.

One highlight: student musicians, stilt-dancing performers and puppeteers from Animal Cracker Conspiracy will guide guests from the museum to Spreckels Organ Pavilion to see the showcase.

The week’s activities, which continue through Sunday, bring together professionals, from performers and chefs to other creatives from across San Diego and Tijuana, to celebrate design.

“San Diego Design Week is a catalyst for collaboration in our San Diego/Tijuana region,” said Patricia Cué, a founding committee member for the event and creative director at the Mingei. “It sparks new ideas and connections, making our cross-border creative community an international destination for designers and creatives from all design disciplines.”

Scheduled to appear are fashion designer Claudia Biezunski-Rodriguez Hues, pastry chefs Arely Chavez and Letha Gimble and Brazilian-American artist Yomar Agusto.

Some highlights of the events, which include studio tours, film screenings and tastings (many are free, but some require a fee), are:

  • Toying with Design – The Mingei special exhibition, available through the week, explores how architects and designers come together to craft toy-like, utilitarian objects. The goal is to reveal universal symbols that span generations and cultures, while exposing stylistic trends. Included with museum admission.
  • International Fashion Show: Diversity Through Design, by the International Rescue Committee Small Business Development Center, at 11:30 a.m. Sept. 24, features designers from across the globe, including Togo, Uganda, Mexico, Afghanistan and Iraq who use their immigrant and refugee backgrounds to inspire their designs. 
  • Open Studio, Sept. 24-25 – Fragmento, an interdisciplinary studio in Tijuana, will open its doors for a free exhibit focused on the natural and material elements that leave a mark on spaces and everyday objects.

In addition to the Mingei, sites for the week include San Diego State, the NewSchool of Architecture and Design and ICA San Diego, and various galleries throughout the region. There are virtual options as well.

San Diego Design Week is a member of World Design Weeks, a network that includes events across the world. San Diego and Tijuana were also named World Design Capital 2024, the first binational recognition of its kind.


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