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Art Exhibits to Explore this Year to Inspire Great Design

Posted by Emser Tile on Jun 15, 2017 9:38:05 AM

“Inspiration comes from everywhere: books, art, people on the street. It is an interior process for me.” – Colleen Atwood

As Atwood suggests, inspiration can come from a myriad of places – from the pages of a magazine to a stop at a friend’s home to a profound experience. Designers are always looking for their fill of creativity to spark passion projects. Consider, this year, a new approach to creative inspiration: we’ve compiled our picks for art events and exhibits around the world to fuel your next design project.

Start Local
No matter where you live, design inspiration can be right outside your front door. Local artists and artisans offer unique perspective on the local and regional aesthetic, which can serve as starting point to designs reflective of your community. From art gallery viewings to sidewalk festivals and farmer's markets, the key in exploring local art is to be open.


Draw Structure
Architecture celebrates the periodic and cultural beauty of a location.

Take the Chicago Architecture Biennial, for example. Billed as platform for architectural projects and spatial experiments that demonstrate how creativity and innovation transforms our lived experience, the Biennial is a series of exhibits, tours and installations showcasing the latest in architectural design. Opening September 16 and running through January 7, 2018, the Chicago Architecture Biennial’s main hub is the Chicago Cultural Center – itself a thriving public landmark. 

You can also receive architectural design inspiration through poignant medium of film. Architecture & Design Film Festival – hosted in New York City November 1-5 – celebrates the unique spirit of architecture and design by entertaining, engaging and educating those excited about design. A curated schedule of films, discussion and events provide a deeper understanding of architectural design and influence in the bustling setting of NYC. 

Develop Perspective
With good design comes a solid sense of what you are accomplishing. Perspective adds dimension, and is often uses as a foundation to design. 

In no less a place as the nation’s capital lies the Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture – a complex housing the American Art Museum. The American Art Museum, known as a leader in identifying and collecting significant aspects of American visual culture, is the country’s first collection of American art. Housing work representing the American experience, the museum recently has strengthened its contemporary art collection. For those particularly interested in exploring traditional and innovative approaches to making, visit the Renwick Gallery, which houses contemporary and decorative crafts. 

Also found in the Donald W. Reynolds Center is the National Portrait Gallery, depicting the identity of America through faces, stories and portraiture, and the Kogod Courtyard, a soaring, glass-ceilinged courtyard designed by London-based architects Foster + Partners and hosting a variety of daily activities.

Explore Trends

Every designer knows the value of staying on top of the latest trends. So for our next recommendation, be inspired by the latest in modern and contemporary art.

Leading galleries from across the globe converge on Art Basel’s American show, hosted in Miami Beach December 7-10. Showcasing works from the masters along side the next generation of talent, Art Basel represents almost every medium – 2D and 3D art forms, installations, films, performances and more. If you find yourself itching for a trip abroad as you immerse yourself in the trends, consider the Basel show in Switzerland this month or the Hong Kong show held in March 2018. 

Revel in Real
Inspiration comes in all forms – but none are more prevalent than the art surrounding us daily. Photography delights in the real and depicts that real in a way that transcends the commonplace.

For globetrotters, head to the City of Lights November 9-12 for the world’s largest international art fair dedicated to photography – Paris Photo. With a diverse selection of photography from more than 180 galleries and publishers, Paris Photo covers the spectrum of photography history within the exquisite setting of the Grand Palais. 

No matter your form of design, cultivating a thoughtful flow of inspiration is worth the investment. Art shows and exhibitions broaden our outlook and showcase more than what our daily life might offer. So, mark your calendars and see what inspiration these shows bring to you!

You can also visit our
image gallery for the latest in inspired interior design, showcasing Emser products that may inspire you for your next project.

Topics: Insider

Design trends and inspiration for tile & natural stone

We are driven by design, and in Finishing Thoughts, we bring it to life - sharing tile trends, spotlighting those who inspire us, and sparking creativity for residential and commercial spaces.

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