Off to Mi­lan:

De­signer Dun­can Meerd­ing to ex­hibit in Italy.

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - TASSIE LIVING -

TAS­MA­NIAN fur­ni­ture de­signer Dun­can Meerd­ing is head­ing to Mi­lan. Meerd­ing has been se­lected to ex­hibit at a ma­jor in­ter­na­tional show for light­ing de­sign­ers – one of just 500 de­sign­ers world­wide to be ex­tended such an in­vite.

Early last year he made his way to Ger­many for the bi­en­nial Messe Frank­furt Light + Build­ing Trade Show and next month Meerd­ing will show­case his prod­ucts at Euroluce, one of the world’s largest light­ing shows.

The five-day Euroluce event at­tracts more than 300,000 vis­i­tors.

Meerd­ing called it the “ideal plat­form” on which to show­case his hand­crafted, sus­tain­able de­signs.

Meerd­ing will be tak­ing some new de­signs to the show along­side pieces he is best known for like his cracked log lamps and pro­pel­ler pen­dant lights.

He has also some ex­cit­ing ideas bub­bling for the show­case.

“We will be mak­ing some big in­stal­la­tions,” he said.

“They will be big sculp­tural in­stal­la­tions which flat­pack down for the show.

“One is a gi­ant pro­pel­ler flower that sits on end on the floor, like a closed flower fallen on its stalk. An­other will be sim­i­lar to my box spi­rals light but 1.8m tall.”

Meerd­ing said he had not at­tended the Euroluce show be­fore.

“I have not been to Mi­lan at all,” he said. “But this trip will be good ex­po­sure to po­ten­tial busi­ness part­ners and to meet sim­i­larly minded peo­ple.

“It would be great to gain busi­ness con­tacts but also to en­gage with other de­sign prac­tises.”

Over the last five years Meerd­ing has seen a shift in his au­di­ence.

The ma­jor­ity of his sales are now to North Amer­i­can and Euro­pean cus­tomers and he at­tributes this change to grow­ing de­mand for qual­ity, hand­made de­sign over mass man­u­fac­tured items.

Meerd­ing said the re­sponse to his work in Ger­many last year was over­whelm­ing. “Vis­i­tors were in­trigued by my de­signs,” he said.

Meerd­ing has a unique per­spec­tive hav­ing lost his vi­sion at age 18.

His work re­flects an al­ter­nate sen­sory world that most peo­ple don’t have any ex- pe­ri­ence with. Meerd­ing said there were bar­ri­ers to over­come for young Aus­tralian de­sign­ers wish­ing to par­tic­i­pate at in­ter­na­tional ex­hi­bi­tions like the ones that he has and shortly will again.

“There are fi­nance, ge­og­ra­phy and lan­guage bar­ri­ers to name a few,” he said.

“I have been for­tu­nate to re­ceive two grants from the Arts Coun­cil of Aus­tralia and Arts Tas­ma­nia to help with this dream.”

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