Articles Special Article What It Means to Design the Future at the First-Ever Manila Interior Design Summit

What It Means to Design the Future at the First-Ever Manila Interior Design Summit

The Philippine Institute of Interior Designers held the first-ever Manila Interior Design Summit last April 11-12, 2023.

It all began with a curious query: how will the future look like?

With the world changing at a much faster pace, designers are called to the challenge to adapt alongside it by sculpting spaces that are future-proof, and sustainable, all the while preserving humanity and culture.

Hence, the theme for the 2023 Manila Interior Design Summit (MIDS) is Designing the Future — giving acknowledgement to the technology that will inevitably be part of tomorrow. This theme heavily questions how designers can utilize the rapid advancement of technology to humanity’s advantage and for environment’s sake.

MIDS is an event organized by The Philippine Institute of Interior Designers (PIID) held during April 10-12, 2023 at the Globe Auditorium, Maybank Performing Arts Theater, Bonifacio Global City. The main highlight of this event is the two-day design symposium for interior designers, architects, and allied professions focusing on the best practices and strategies for designing the future in a sustainable manner. Key principles such as minimizing waste, reducing energy consumption, and using environmentally friendly materials were explored along with how these can be applied in interior design and architectural projects. For this symposium, PIID collaborated with local and international collectives to empower the creative vision of the Filipinos while taking inspiration from other cultures.

Poster of the MIDS 2-day symposium.

For the first day of the symposium, they had notable speakers: Ms. Cherrie Atilano, Founder, CEO, and President of AGREA Agricultural Systems International, Inc.; Ar. Michael Rosette Santos-Tayag, a representative of the United Architects of he Philippines; Ar. Soo K. Chan, Founder and Design Director of SCDA Architects Pete Ltd.; IDr. Tina Periquet, the Principal Designser of Periquet Galicia; IDr. Naila Djatnika, Principal and Founder of designpartners Indonesia; and Ar. Jabeen Zacharias, the first lady President of IID and Chief Architect of Jabeen Zacharias Architects.

The second day also features a star-studded panel of speakers: Ar. Royal Pineda, the Co-Founder and Lead Architect of Budji + Royal Architecture + Design; Mr. Eggarat Wongcharit, CEO and Creative Director of Craft Factor Co. Ltd.; Ar. Larry Ng, a distinguished member of Singapore’s Board of Architects; IDr. Lai Siew Hong, the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Designer of Blu Water Studio; and IDr. Keat Ong, Founder of Nota Design Group.

View of the MIDS 2-day symposium stage.

Aside from the two-day seminar, PIID also teamed up with the BGC Arts Foundation for an Interactive Art Walk around BGC. This was open to all PIID members and allied professions. The culminating activity for this portion of the event was a photo contest hall to exercise all of the participants’ creativity.

PIID closed the Manila Interior Design Summit with their very first PIID Gala to gather interior designers, architects, allied professions, educators, policy makers, developers, and industry partners to celebrate their friendship and future collaborative endeavors. During this event, the Asia Pacific Space Designers Association (APSDA) also launched the APSDA Awards — an interior design award that recognizes the best and brightest designers in the industry for their outstanding projects and contribution to furthering the field of interior design.

View of the main stage of the MIDS Gala night.

Designing for the future entails strong and collaborative environments. By building a strong design and creative community with awareness for culture, materiality, technology, and environment, there will be a solid plan that will be developed and passed on to generations of designers and shapers. And the first Manila Interior Design Summit was the first step to make this possible.

As parting words from IDr. Lai Siew Hong, “Respect the past; connect the future.”