2023 DesignPhiladelphia Festival

October 4–15
Location: Cherry Street Pier
Time: Times Vary

Join us for the 2023 DesignPhiladelphia Festival presented by Thomas Jefferson University from October 4 through October 15 at Cherry Street Pier with featured events at locations across the City. All ages. Admission is free unless otherwise noted.

Get ready for an exhilarating showcase of Philadelphia’s local design talent. From innovative architecture to cutting-edge fashion, this festival celebrates it all. Join us in celebrating the power of design to shape our world, as DesignPhiladelphia explores the boundless possibilities of our local designers. This festival is a testament to Philadelphia’s creativity, innovation, and the designers who make it happen.

Join select Cherry Street Pier artists for special events during the festival. Learn more about the festival and review the full calendar of events.

Event Highlights
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 5:30 p.m.-9 p.m.: (TICKETED) DesignPhiladelphia Kickoff Party
Thursday, Oct. 5 – Oct. 15, 12 pm-6 pm: Thomcat23 Open House (Studio 7)
Friday, Oct. 6, 6 p.m. -9 p.m.: Walls for Justice Community Paint Day (Studio 8)
Saturday, Oct. 7, 12 p.m.-4 p.m.: DesignPhilly Kids Fest
Tuesday, Oct. 10,  5 p.m. – 7 p.m.: Soap Design with Nyambi Naturals (Studio 3)
Friday, Oct. 13, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.: Walls for Justice Community Paint Day (Studio 8)
Saturday, Oct. 14, 1 p.m.-5 p.m.: Art Showcase presented by the Craft Coven (Studio 15)
Sunday, Oct. 15, 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.: Soap Design with Nyambi Naturals (Studio 3)
Sunday, Oct. 15, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.: Botanical Dye – Print with Flowers with Bonnie MacAllister (Studio 16)

Featured Exhibitions: Oct. 5 to 15
DNA Floral:
DNA Floral will be exhibiting their mixed-media/floral piece “Freedom”. With this display influenced by vibrant textures, colors, culture, and Africa, the hope is that others will be inspired to create in a medium that doesn’t box them into just one category.

Westphal Makes: Westphal Makes represents the community of artists and designers at the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design situated within Drexel University. This pop-up gallery showcases students, alumni, faculty, and staff from the disciplines of Product Design, Photography, Music Industry, Design and Merchandising, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Urban Planning, Interior Design, Architecture, Fine Art, Art History, Dance, Game Design, Digital Media & Virtual Production, Animation, User Experience & Interaction Design, and Design Research.

Undercurrents: Mapping the ebb and flow of Philadelphia’s Waterfronts: Explore the constant evolution of Philadelphia’s waterfronts at the urban scale and craft your own imaginaries for the future. As viewers move around the different faces of the exhibit and reimagine the layers, distinct and sometimes conflicting narratives emerge. Dappled light illuminates certain narratives while obscuring others and evokes the childlike wonder of peering into a mysterious body of water to uncover what lies just below the surface.

Hoffman Design: This year we are excited to offer a new approach to an immersive display we are calling, “Botanical Uprising.” Inspiration for this year’s design sprang from our interest in the spaces where concrete meets soil.

Create Your Own Light: Synergy will be demonstrating how designers can use lighting, lighting controls, and the power of natural light to transform a space, elevate design, and bring ideas to life in new ways.

Threads of Innovation: A Journey Through Textiles, Design, & Architecture: Threads of Innovation serves as a celebration of Thomas Jefferson’s University’s dedication and commitment to educating current and future leaders in the many disciplines of textiles, design, and architecture.

Periscope: Periscope is an installation that highlights interdisciplinary research being conducted within the Tyler School of Art and Architecture through materiality, contrast, and the framing of artifacts and the environment.

Steph Trowbridge: Steph Trowbridge is a woodworker and ceramist based out of South Jersey. Steph creates household items that combine style and utility, taking functional tools and forming them into pieces that can also be decorative objects.

Unform Studio Presents The Drip Collection: This exhibit spills out onto the floor of Cherry Street Pier and invites DesignPhiladelphia attendees to take a seat and enjoy the brightly colored furniture.

Laura Bertapelle: Philadelphia-based furniture designer and fabricator, Laura Bertapelle, is a multimedia artist whose artistic interest originated in the ceramic arts in 2002. Since graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design, her material explorations have expanded to include glass, wood, metal, and more.

The Dobbins High School Fashion Experience: See the talent of Philadelphia’s only public fashion high school, the Fashion Program at Dobbins High School. The students will explore identity and self-expression through fashion, creating clothing that responds to various social and cultural backgrounds and experimenting with and combining traditional and modern textile techniques.

BRDG Studios + One Hundred Ninth: At the heart of the interactive installation are projection-mapped Ba Tables from One Hundred Ninth’s Graham Kelman Collection that will serve as a platform for delivering engaging and playful experiences for all festival attendees.

Ann T. Dinh: Đậm Đà is a semi-handcrafted ceramic set that has multiple forms of communication embedded in its design. It indicates both the ingredients needed and the approximate measurements, along with being a means of serving a dish

2023 DesignPhiladelphia Full Schedule of Events.

Know Before You Go