your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023

your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023

LADF 2023: ‘design for the people’


The Los Angeles Design Festival (LADF) is gearing up to make its much-anticipated return with a citywide celebration that embraces the rich design culture of Los Angeles. The festival will unite a diverse array of both local and global creatives, and will be anchored at ROW DTLA and Helms Bakery District in West LA, while also extending its reach with an outpost in Long Beach and various independent events throughout the city. LADF will run from Thursday, June 22nd through Sunday, June 25th, 2023.


With the overarching theme of ‘Design for the People,’ the voices of creatives from many backgrounds and practices will be amplified. Visitors can look forward to events such as studio tours, panel discussions, curated exhibitions, experiential installations, and pop-ups. Keeping with the spirit of accessibility and inclusivity, the majority of its programming is free to attend and open to the public, ensuring that anyone with an interest in design is welcome. Mark your calendars as designboom brings an essential roundup of the most unmissable events happening during the LA Design Festival 2023!

your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023image courtesy Helms Bakery District



‘criss cross’ by Studio Left


Studio Left introduces ‘Criss Cross’ as a modern reinterpretation of the ancient Indonesian art of ‘anyaman,’ which involves intricate weaving techniques used for a wide range of applications, from hut walls to other protective structures. The design team translates the concept of weaving into a contemporary context by creating custom felt modules that seamlessly interlock, forming a vibrant skin across a dome-shaped structure. The patterns were thoughtfully devised to employ leftover materials from previous projects, allowing for a sustainable approach where every piece is meticulously cut from reclaimed resources.


‘Criss Cross’ will be on view at ROW DTLA.

LA design festival 2023image courtesy Studio Left



‘Sympathetic Resonance’ by Lachlan Turczan


Lachlan Turczan, an LA-based artist specializing in the interplay of water, light, and sound, presents ‘Sympathetic Resonance.’ Originally created for the ‘Shaped by Water’ exhibition during Milan Design Week 2023 (see designboom’s coverage here), the exhibition will showcase a mesmerizing collection of mirrored sculptures, delicately filled with shallow pools of water. These polished vessels are crafted to ‘dissolve into their surroundings,’ adopting the unique ambiance of the space and offering a distilled encounter with the captivating sonic properties of water. As viewers approach the sculptures and navigate the environment, their movements, collective presence, and proximity will be mirrored in the form of wave patterns on the water’s surface, accompanied by resonant infrasonic tones that will fill the air. 


‘Sympathetic Resonance’ will be on view at ROW DTLA.

LA design festival 2023exhibition view at Milan Design Week 2023 | image courtesy Lachlan Turczan



Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip-Hop Architecture


Debuting at the LA Design Festival 2023 is an exhibition curated by Sekou Cooke titled ‘Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip-Hop Architecture.’ Originally presented at the AIA New York Center for Architecture in October 2018, this show delves into the realm of Hip-Hop Architecture, highlighting the work of over twenty students, academics, and practitioners from across seven countries. At the forefront of an emerging architectural movement, these creators present a diverse range of projects that transcend traditional boundaries, encompassing experimental visualizations, immersive installations, facade studies, innovative building designs, and bold urban development proposals.


‘Close to the Edge: The Birth of Hip-Hop Architecture’ will be on view at Helms Bakery District.

LA design festival 2023exhibition view at AIA New York Center for Architecture, 2018 | image courtesy Helms Bakery District



Susan Maddux Exhibition


Los Angeles artist Susan Maddux channels the spirit of origami, employing folding techniques and collage to metamorphose paintings into evocative wall sculptures that possess a profound and totemic essence. Hailing from a lineage of fourth-generation Japanese-Americans, Maddux, who was born and raised in Hawaii, delves into the exploration of reconnecting with personal history and sense of belonging through the transformative manipulation of materials and the ritualistic language of gestures.


The Susan Maddux exhibition will be on view at Helms Bakery District.

LA design festival 2023image courtesy Susan Maddux



Dyan Jong light installation


Artist Dyan Jong repurposes film lights to render an expansive and immersive light installation during the LA Design Festival 2023. Drawing inspiration from her background as an image-maker in the music and entertainment industries, Jong openly embraces the presence of these film lights, acknowledging their influential role in the creation of Hollywood’s ‘movie magic.’ In her dream-like artworks, light transcends its traditional role and metamorphoses into a tangible, lived experience for the audience. Visitors are invited to step onto the set, assuming the dual roles of consumers and creators as they encounter and document their own unique encounters with the mesmerizing interplay of light within these extraordinary installations.


Dyan Jong’s light installation will be on view at ROW DTLA.


‘Beyond Garden,’ 2020, Dyan Jong


CarbonShack’s CasaZero Home Tour


‘Ecopreneur’ Stephen Pallrand, founder of CarbonShack and Home Front Build, will lead a tour of CasaZero, an all-electric home in Mt. Washington that produces more energy than it consumes. This high-performing dwelling is built of salvaged materials sourced from within Los Angeles and a 100-mile radius, and takes shape as a stunning space that embraces nature. Collaborating with artist Rachel Mayeri, the CarbonShack team incorporates design elements inspired by the microbiome throughout the home’s fixtures, tilework, fabrics, and furnishings, emphasizing our deep connection with the natural world.


Located at 1359 Killarney Ave., Los Angeles, the tour will be held on Sunday, June 25, 2023, at 11am.

your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023inside CasaZero | image courtesy CarbonShack



MDAP neurofeedback project


Mario D. Alvarado (MDAP), a musician, composer, and innovative programmer, intertwines technology and art to create music that is generated through the intricacies of body movement, brain waves, heart rate, and breathing. Harnessing the power of biofeedback sensors and sophisticated software algorithms, the human body and its organic processes become the maestro behind a captivating audiovisual performance. The MDAP project strives to shed light on the transformative potential of music therapy, fostering realms of meditation, mindfulness, and psychomotor exploration.


The ‘Neurofeedback Project’ will show at the ROW DTLA.

your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023image courtesy MDAP



RAD Furniture Garden Party


After establishing itself as a sought-after furniture brand within the commercial design industry over the past decade, LA-based RAD Furniture will launch a new online storefront, bringing the furniture line within reach of the wider design community. To commemorate this milestone, RAD invites visitors to join them for a celebratory and immersive shoppable garden party nestled amidst the natural beauty of Plant Material in Silver Lake. The group will offer ‘herbaceous cocktails’ as guests experience the new collection of color-forward seating firsthand.


The RAD garden party will be held at Plant Material (3024 La Paz Drive) on Thursday, June 22, 2023, 5-8pm.

your guide for the must-see events at LA design festival 2023image courtesy RAD Furniture





As the LA Design Festival 2023 expands its reach to Long Beach, an exciting lineup of events is presented by Studio One Eleven. The studio has worked in collaboration with partners including the Long Beach Museum of Art x People’s Pottery, artist Mario Ybarra Jr., Long Beach Community Design Center, and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Long Beach/South Bay, this series explores the realms of architecture, landscape design, urban planning, and more. Visitors can discover a captivating International Poster Exhibition curated by Poster Territory, will showcasing over seventy posters from talented designers and graphic artists worldwide. Find the full list of events here.



talks, workshops & ticketed events



Adobe: Creating Gen AI Tools with and for Designers: ‘Meet Adobe Firefly, a family of creative generative AI models coming to Adobe products. Firefly will give creators the power to use everyday language to generate extraordinary content while significantly improving workflows.’ June 22nd, 2023, 7pm at Helms Bakery District — find free tickets here.


People Powered: A Screen Printing Workshop: ‘Join designer and Firebrand Creative House Founder Schessa Garbutt for a screen printing demo and talk about protest art histories. Print your own talismans of resistance with a design from the Firebrand collection. Fabric will be provided for those who would like to make patches. Attendees are encouraged to bring two cotton garments.’ June 23rd — June 25th, 2023 at ROW DTLA — purchase $25 tickets here.


Big, Small, and Messy Design History: Los Angeles + Add-a-Thon Live!: Expanding Los Angeles’ Graphic Design History Together:The People’s Graphic Design Archive Co-Director Louise Sandhaus discusses the crowd-sourced, virtual archive of inclusive graphic design history. Following the talk is a hands-on workshop in which participants have the opportunity to add material to the Archive and learn basic research techniques. Participants are encouraged to bring a digital photo or scan of graphic design to the workshop along with as much information as is available about the work.’ Saturday, June 24th, 12pm (talk), 1:30pm (workshop) at ROW DTLA — get free tickets to the talk and workshop.



project info:


event: LA Design Festival 2023 | @ladesignfestival

locations: ROW DTLA (777 S. Alameda Street), Helms Bakery District (8000 Venice Boulevard), Long Beach, various independent locations

dates: June 22nd — June 25th, 2023

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