Furthering its reach and impact in the design community and beyond, NYCxDESIGN recently announced its transition to a New York not-for-profit corporation. The shift heralds in expanded year-round programming, including activations, awards, and podcasts, as well as an inaugural NYCxDESIGN grant, which will be awarded to an entrepreneurial designer or design business focused on pushing the industry forward in terms of diversity, sustainability, and innovation.
The not-for-profit status enables NYCxDESIGN—led by Valerie Hoffman, program director, and formerly managed by SANDOW—to focus on revitalizing the design culture in New York City in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The first step involves forming a board of directors and exploring executive director candidates for NYCxDESIGN's new entity, working closely with the NYCEDC as well as its Steering Committee. “In 2019, the City of New York transitioned management of NYCxDESIGN to SANDOW, a company deeply rooted in design, to strengthen and grow the program. After assessment by SANDOW and several members of the NYCxDESIGN Steering Committee, it was determined that NYCxDESIGN should transition to a not-for-profit entity to best serve our community," said Hoffman. "Core to the not-for-profit’s values are diversity, purpose, cultural placemaking, economic opportunity, and creativity and inspiration. These pillars will serve as the foundation for all NYCxDESIGN programming and content."
As part of its new programming, NYCxDESIGN plans to present a series of Design Days from May 13–18, 2021, with virtual events as well as outdoor experiences, select tours, and small gatherings, depending on COVID-19 protocols at that time. The annual NYCxDESIGN Awards program, hosted by Interior Design and sponsored by International Contemporary Furniture Fair, is still expected to take place virtually to celebrate and recognize exceptional design in NYC, as it did this year. The week-long program also will include Design Pavilion’s Open to the Sky, a city-wide installation activating all five boroughs with built structures that embody messages of hope and spirit, and an expanded edition of ICFF + WantedDesign Manhattan’s virtual CLOSEUP event.
In addition to partner organized events, the NYCxDESIGN team plans to curate special offerings including self-guided journeys, as well as interviews and tours that will be broadcasted to a global audience on DesignTV by SANDOW.