The UK is the Partner Country of German trade show Ambiente for 2017.
Following the Italian tricolour this year, the fair – which runs from February 10 to February 14 at the Frankfurt Fair and Exhibition Centre – will be dominated by the Union Jack.
Detlef Braun, member of the board of management of show organiser Messe Frankfurt said: “I’m delighted that the UK, one of the world’s most important political and business players and a partner of major significance for Germany, has agreed to be our Partner Country.
“But that’s not all: the United Kingdom is a country of great diversity, which results in an incomparable spectrum of outstanding design. And this is exactly what we aim to show the audience of visitors and exhibitors from all over the world at the next Ambiente.”
The products of UK exhibitors will be shown in an extensive Partner Country presentation curated and designed by Scottish designer Janice Kirkpatrick, one of the UK’s leading graphic and product designers.
In 1986, she joined forces with architect Ross Hunter to found Graven, a design studio specialising in creating brands at home and abroad. They include the development of the British Airways Lounge in Singapore, the interior design of the Radission Blu Warwick Hotel in Philadelphia and the redesign of the 500-seat Lagune restaurant at the VW Autostadt in Wolfsburg.
Janice is also a professor for design at the Glasgow School of Art, works for radio and television, and writes and edits books on a variety of cultural and economic topics.
In the late 1990s, she designed the ‘Self-Service’ special exhibition for the fair. “I’m excited to design the Ambiente UK Partner exhibition, after designing ‘Self-Service’ in 1998”, she said.
Asked about her concept for the Partner Country presentation, she said: “Glasgow in Scotland, in the UK and Europe – in all its dimensions – is the perspective through which I work. I will search for exceptional micro-local and national products and ingredients to create the 2017 UK Partner exhibition.”
In addition to the presentation, there will be a café in the style of the Partner Country and, on the Monday of the fair, a themed Great Britain Day will take place. This will be organised by UK exhibitors who will invite Ambiente visitors to a variety of events and presentations. The day will be rounded off by the Partner Country Reception, during which the next Ambiente Partner Country will be officially announced.
A total of 4,367 exhibitors from 96 countries attended Ambiente 2016, spreading their wares across 308,000sq m of exhibition space (gross) for five days.
The UK was represented by 138 companies, taking seventh place on the list of the biggest exhibitor nations. On the visitor side, the UK holds sixth place. Of the 137,000 visitors from 143 countries, 3,249 came from the UK. For the first time, the proportion of visitors from outside Germany reached 55%. The top ten visitor nations after Germany were Italy, France, Spain, the Netherlands, UK, China, USA, Switzerland, Turkey and South Korea.