Indulge in UNESCO’s City of Design at Detroit Design Festival

Modified: August 05, 2019 | Story by Stephanie Angelyn Casola | Photos by Detroit Design Festival

You don’t have to be an artist to enjoy the Detroit Design Festival when it returns Sept. 26-30, 2017. In fact, the ever-expanding event is a point of pride countrywide.

The festival, which began in 2010, now includes more than 80 independent and community events. Each is meant to showcase world-class design projects created in Detroit. Organizers of DDF at Detroit Creative Corridor Center will continue to celebrate the city’s status, as a City of Design.

“We are creating an experience that will highlight Detroit’s legacy while also inspiring the next generation of designers to re-imagine Detroit as a City of Design,” said Melinda Anderson, Detroit Design Festival creative director. “Thinking about Detroit’s future is just as important as remembering our history and design legacy.”

On Dec. 15, 2015, Detroit became the first and only city in the United States to receive the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) City of Design designation.

“We are honored that Detroit has received this international recognition for its rich design heritage and commitment to the creative sector around the globe,” added Olga Stella, executive director of Detroit Creative Corridor. “We hope to inspire our community to begin to think about the impact that Detroit as a City of Design can have in creating jobs, improving place, and strengthening culture over the next 10 years.”

Those in attendance this year won’t want to miss the following signature Detroit events:

  • Eastern Market After Dark – More than 30 creative venues will open to the public at night, hosting special events like the AIA Detroit Fashion Show, Murals in the Market, hands-on demonstrations and more.
  • Light Up Livernois – Head to Livernois and 7 Mile to experience the urban redevelopment on the Avenue of Fashion at the most exciting time.
  • Youth Day  – Join Detroit’s next generation of design stars the Michigan Science Center for an afternoon of design education and exploration.
  • Designer Putt Putt –  The DDF selected five designers through a design competition to create an installation for one of the Putt Putt holes. The goal of the installations is to convey the unique experience of “Design Is Everywhere.”

The Detroit Design Festival promotes a strong collaboration between the city’s major corporations and up and coming creative minds. Each year, festival organizers foster a sense of hope, provide a platform for artists, a space to connect consumers and businesses and to encourage Detroit’s creative community to gather and grow.

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Mentioned Attractions And Venues





  1. 1
    Eastern Market
    Russell Street between Mack Avenue and Gratiot Avenue, 2934 Russell St., Detroit, MI 48207
    313-833-9300
  2. 2
    Michigan Science Center
    5020 John R St., Detroit, MI 48202
    313-577-8400