BRIDGING TIES

Showcasing Singapore's design industry in Asia

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Attendees from China visited prominent buildings in Singapore as part of a five day workshop.

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A lecture by speaker and joint-founder of DRB Kelley Cheng as part of sharing session in the workshop.

The future of the Singapore design scene is thriving. Now the fraternity of local interior designers can extend their professional reach outside of the city through workshops, seminars and events.

Design Gateway is one such vehicle to forge international ties by showcasing local talents and providing them with a ready audience. Founded by Interior Designer, Raj Shah is no stranger in Singapore's Design scene.  Raj who is also an Honorary Advisor to the Society of Interiors Designer Singapore, believes that China is one audience to focus on fostering and linking industry practitioners from the region in line with China's One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative.

"The One Belt One Road initiative has far reaching implications in as much as it will connect China all the way from Asia to the Middle East and even to Europe. The push by China's central government to unite all along the path is significant," shares Raj.

To encourage designers to venture further, Design Gateway partnered with new outfit Design Research Bureau (DRB) to deliver the first edition of 'Design & Research Workshop' - a platform to share design thinking and research methodologies to design practitioners.

Established by a group of noteworthy Singaporean Designers in architecture, interiors and furniture. DRB was initiated by Keat Ong (Nota Design Group) who roped in Kelley Cheng (The Press Room), Nathan Yong (Nathan Yong Design), Colin Seah (Ministry of Design) and Peter Tay (Peter Tay Studio); all of whom are speakers at the sharing workshops.

A typical DRB workshop entails three days of lectures and two days of guided tours to Singapore's prominent architecture. The first workshop in August catered to attendees from China who are designers and employees within the design industry such as materials suppliers and specialists.

According to Raj, the friendship fostered between China and Singapore counterparts is mutually beneficial with plans to host workshops in Asean countries in the pipeline.

"Singaporean or Singapore based designers are already a brand name in China and the region. But this does not always translate to business opportunities," says Raj. "Having the attendees come to Singapore and attend the Workshop, naturally extends itself to a one on one networking session. This limited time but close up interaction has the potential to lead to larger opportunities for the Speakers to reach Cities and Regions that they may not have even given a second thought. Here, the potential customer is your captive audience."

SOURCE:

Design Gateway Pte Ltd, www.designgateway.asia