Winnie Yue wants to push boundaries with a new addition to Hong Kong’s creative scene
Winnie Yue wants to push boundaries with her addition to Hong Kong’s design scene
Asia’s first luxury design, furniture and lifestyle fair makes its debut this month. At the International Design Furniture Fair Hong Kong (IDFFHK), more than 20 illustrious European and local brands will be exhibiting, including Baccarat, Lalique and Tang Tang Tang Tang. The fair is spearheaded by Winnie Yue, a University of California–berkeley architecture graduate who manages a portfolio of properties around the world and who has first-hand experience operating designer furniture stores. Yue explains how she hopes the event will push the boundaries of Hong Kong’s creative community and instil a new appreciation of design among residents. The fair takes place from August 21 to 23 at the Convention and Exhibition Centre. Tickets are HK$90 to HK$280 from hkticketing.com. For more information, visit idffhk.com
Tell us about your design background.
I’ve worked in architectural firms in the US and Hong Kong, and later helped with my family redevelopment projects. When I started my own family, I realised there were very limited furniture outlets in Hong Kong. My first shop was in Lan Kwai Fong, away from the typical furniture hub in Happy Valley. It introduced colourful pieces from New York City and it was a sensation.
How do you feel about the inaugural IDFFHK?
I’m very excited to have so much support from the exhibitors, and all our supporters and sponsors. Not only have the exhibitors made significant investments in the setting up and staffing, but they have also put a lot of effort into the design of their showcases. Many of the designers are from Europe and will be displaying their work in Asia for the first time. We also have strong support from the design community, including Hong Kong’s Institute of Architects and the Interior Design Association, the government, financial institutions and business partners, which shows there is huge confidence in the fair. The recognition from these prestigious institutes and other bodies is an important stamp of endorsement and support for an invaluable project.
What’s your opinion of the local design scene today?
The use of the term “creative desert” in relation to Hong Kong is definitely passé these days. With the success of Art Basel in Hong Kong, the government support for the PMQ project and the up-andcoming West Kowloon Cultural District, our art and design scene is much more vibrant than it was. There are, of course, still many challenges here, such as limited platforms and space.
How does beautiful design improve people’s lives?
A beautiful piece of furniture is a piece of functional art. Design is a quality of life. Good design elevates oneself to look better, to feel better, to live better. A home is a sanctuary. People should feel comfort, peace and pride in their home, and a well-designed space will enable them to. Beautiful furniture can change the dynamics of any space. An interior should reflect the character of its user and tell a story.
design queen From left: Winnie Yue is the founder of a new luxury design fair; Boca Do Lobo is one of many featured brands