A day prior to the preview of Design Miami, America learned it had endured a yearlong recession. But the news didn’t faze the design-art showcase’s 23 participating galleries. VIPs crowded Design Miami’s vernissage, and in interviews several dealers were optimistic that buyers would respond well to the upscale limited editions on display. Perhaps the greatest signal of such confidence: their championing as many fresh-faced designers as bankable stars. In a similarly hopeful vein, a number of Design Miami satellite events launched all-new businesses.
- David Sokol

Arabian chic
Just as his Villa Moda chain of department stores brought Western high fashion to the Middle East, Sheikh Majed Al-Sabah plans to promote European design as well as regional artisanship through the Al-Sabah Art & Design Collection. Scheduled to open in Dubai in March, Al-Sabah showed its first collection in Miami. As part of the collection, Lebanese design studio Bokja reupholstered mid-20th-century furniture pieces in local embroideries. Al-Sabah Art & Design Collection, Dubai. www.alsabahcollection.com

[Reader Service: March 2009 #200]


Curious cabinet
The Dutch contemporary art and design gallery Priveekollektie promotes young natives like Wouter Scheublin, whose Cabinet of Chests comprises a reconfigurable stack of walnut volumes with fronts held in place by a bank-safelike combination of wooden hinges and clamps. Each of the eight chests in the series is handmade by the designer. Priveekollektie, Heusden aan de Maas, the Netherlands. www.priveekollektie.com

[Reader Service: March 2009 #201]


Farmer’s market
Continuing its longtime support for Dutch phenom Studio Job, Moss feted Job Smeets and Nynke Tynagel’s new Bavaria series of marquetry pieces, displaying it with highly recognizable pieces by the Campana brothers. The five Indian rosewood furnishings — each of which is produced in a limited edition of six — feature book-matched scenes of farm life in laser-cut inlays. The collection includes a cabinet (shown closed and open), mirror, table, screen, and bench. Moss, New York City. www.mossonline.com
Photo © Robert Kot, Brussels

[Reader Service: March 2009 #202]


Strike a pose
Off-site of the main venue, even Charles & Marie — a producer typically affiliated with small-scale gift items — jumped on the bandwagon of limited-edition furniture, releasing Lucas Massen’s Sitting Chairs/Yoga Chairs in triplicate. One can discern various downward-dog, sun-salutation, and other yoga positions rendered in white oak, upholstery, and marble in this five-piece series. Charles & Marie, San Francisco. www.charlesandmarie.com

[Reader Service: March 2009 #203]

Meta introduced four special editions for its Miami debut. Like its first collection launched at Salone del Mobile last April, these pieces are conceived by contemporary designers and fabricated by master craftsmen. Acanthus, a table lamp designed by Patrick Blanchard in an edition of 10, is one example. A combination of lime wood and sycamore, the luminaire features veneer-thin acanthus leaves balancing on a staff of twisting reeds. Meta, London, www.madebymeta.com

[Reader Service: March 2009 #204]