Birmingham Design Festival returns

Freedom the theme for three day event.

Birmingham Design Festival returns for 2022, taking place from 9th-11th June across the city. Celebrating the theme of ‘freedom’, the Festival includes three days of talks, workshops, and exhibitions spanning design, architecture, illustration, and more.

The city’s annual design festival returns for 2022 with an exciting programme of events that are inspired by this year’s theme, FREEDOM. Events include a line-up of hand-picked industry experts who fit the theme for this year’s Birmingham Design Festival (BDF). Whatever your design interests, festival-goers can expect inspiring talks, hands-on workshops and exhibitions, all of which have been curated into four Design Districts; Graphic, Digital, Product, and brand new for 2022, Illustration. Each District will have its own hub venue which will be host to five free talks per day, pop-up stalls, workshops, and information points as well as being a social space for attendees.

The Graphic District will cover everything from experimental typography to eye-popping collage, world-leading copywriting to boundary-pushing advertising. From New York to Birmingham, BDF will be welcoming editorial legend (and global creative director of Wieden + Kennedy) Richard Turley, who will be spilling the beans on his varied career and unique approach.

Contemporary design icons SPIN Studio will be sharing a talk responding to the theme of Freedom, sharing insights, experiments, and envy-inducing work. Artist and Designer, Morag Myerscough joins the line-up, having recently judged the Sky Arts Series, The Big Design Challenge. BDF will also be welcoming Graphic Artist and Video Director, Jimmy Turrell to the stage, known for his brilliant combination of collage and screenprinting alongside digital techniques.

Over at the Digital District, the hub will play host to talks from UX/UI designers, animators, front-end developers, CGI artists, game designers, and more. Key speakers include Founder and Creative Director of Flow, Karl Doran, Web Design and Accessibility guru, Laura Kalbag. The Festival will also be joined by Creative Developer and Animation wizard, Cassie Evans and the organiser of Triangirls, Liz Hamburger who has recently been promoted to Design Partner at RIVAL. Joining the BDF stage is Elliot Jay Stocks, the former Creative Director of Adobe Fonts who is currently collaborating on the typography education resource at Google Fonts Knowledge.

The Product District brings together speakers who specialise in designing for the built environment. These include architects, interior designers, product and fashion designers, and a vast array of individuals who craft and create amazing things and will be sharing their thoughts on the future of the industry. Amongst the speakers for the Product hub is Arisa Sudangnoi who will be sharing stories about the exciting new gaming console, Playdate, and the likes of Amy Francis-Smith who will discuss the importance of inclusive design.

Angie Bual will also be giving BDF a preview of Trigger’s incredible art installation, PolliNations which is set to transform Birmingham’s Victoria Square as part of Unboxed Festival in September. For those who appreciate furniture restoration and design, Jay blades MBE from the BBC’s Repair Shop will be discussing Jay & Co – his Shropshire-based restoration initiative.

After recognising the need for a new hub, BDF is introducing the Illustration District for the first time which aims to share the work of talented illustrators from around the UK. Speakers include Mr. Bingo who will be bringing his trademark entertaining talk to the BDF stage, and the brilliant Ashwin Chacko will be discussing his ‘positively playful’ work.

BDF Directors, Luke Tonge and Dan Alcorn say, “We’re really excited for this year’s BDF, it’s been a strange few years and we’re so excited for the return of in-person events, to hang out with like-minded people, and be inspired by all the creativity on display. We can’t wait to welcome more amazing speakers to Brum and to provide an accessible event for the creative community!”

BDF is delighted to bring the packed programme of live events back to the city from 9th-11th June. Daytime talks are totally free to attend across all Districts and evening events from £25 per ticket and £15 for students.

For more information about BDF, Birmingham Design Festival.