In January, the New York City Economic Development Corporation, N.Y.C.E.D.C., announced it would turn over operations of New York’s design week organization, NYCxDesign, to Sandow in 2020 through a multiyear, renewable contract. Sandow, a media company and consultancy, owns the design magazines Interior Design, Luxe Interiors + Design, and Galerie, and the materials research library, Material Connexion, prompting questions from some in the design industry about favoritism and privatization of the previously city-run event.
In 2013, the city and an informal group of designers, educators, museum representatives, showroom and brand representatives and others jointly introduced NYCxDesign to raise the profile of New York’s design week and encourage collaboration among different groups and across design disciplines.
The group eventually became NYCxDesign’s steering committee. NYCxDesign runs from early to mid-May, and functions as an umbrella organization and information clearinghouse for hundreds of design-related events that run in tandem with several independently operated design trade fairs. According to the economic development corporation, the event drew more than 336,000 people in 2018. “It needed to move outside of city operations to grow and build new audiences,” said Alex Costas, the senior vice president of marketing for N.Y.C.E.D.C. “Sandow has a large global audience, a proven track record with producing events and relationships with leading design firms around the world,” he added.Photo: @noelsutherland