12.–16.01.2025 #immcologne

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International design know how at The Stage

The upcoming edition of imm cologne’s trend forum, The Stage, will focus not only on lectures on current colour and furnishing trends, but also on sustainability in particular as well as steering the conversation onto future ways of living. One-third of the prestigious speakers on the trade visitor days will be travelling from outside Germany. Numerous renowned designers and interiors professionals will be sharing their knowledge with visitors to imm cologne 2020 free of charge.

The Stage at imm cologne 2020

The Stage brings international interior design know-how to the imm cologne 2020 stage - imm cologne offers its visitors one of the world's most competent lecture forums as a free service. Photo: Lutz Sternstein, Koelnmesse

For one week every January, the trend forum The Stage turns Koelnmesse’s Hall 3.1 into the hotspot for experts and specialists from the world of interior design. This is where future developments in the way we live are presented, living concepts critiqued and trends discussed. With The Stage, the Interior Business Event imm cologne 2020 will once again provide an overview of the latest trending topics in home living and offer architects, interior decorators, designers and journalists a platform for information and networking. On the public days, experts from various areas of the interior design business will supply visitors with information and tips on furnishing their own homes. As usual, all of the talks will be simultaneously translated (German/English). The Stage sets a global benchmark as arguably the most professional free lecture forum at an interiors trade fair.

The Stage at imm cologne 2020

Interesting talk guests from the design scene at the almost legendary Designer's Talk are greeted by journalist Barbara Friedrich. Photo: Lutz Sternstein, Koelnmesse

Alongside talks on trending topics relating to colours and materials, the upcoming edition of The Stage will turn the spotlight onto sustainability considerations. Interior design in the contract sector, especially in hospitality projects, will also be addressed. In addition, the audience will be offered a broad spectrum of topics related to business, contract work, room concepts and individualisation – not forgetting specialist areas, such as the role of fragrance as a design element in interior design or the latest findings on the subject of VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity), the popular managerial learning model for change management in an increasingly complicated environment.

Trade fair standards and highlights

Each day’s programme will be introduced with an overview of the current trends and new developments at imm cologne 2020 by design journalist and trends researcher Frank A. Reinhardt. “Das Haus” designers Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón from the MUT studio will present the concept for their living space installation. With their version of “Das Haus – Interiors on Stage” at imm cologne, the Spanish design duo will be showcasing their vision for contemporary, outdoors orientated living – entitled “A la fresca”.

Speakers from all around the world

The Stage at imm cologne 2020

Full house at The Stage: Karl Johan Bertilsson (Sweden) reports on current colour trends and fascinates his listeners with accurate colour forecasts for the furnishing year 2020. Photo: Lutz Sternstein, Koelnmesse

With one-third of the talks on the trade visitor days being given by speakers from outside Germany, the trend forum is more international than ever before. For example, in addition to Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón (Spain), Nada Borgi and Etienne Bastormagi (Lebanon) as well as Therese and Regina Virserius (USA) will be speaking on the subject of layout and the use of space in interior design. Philippe Malouin (Canada), Rahul Das, Sean Sutcliffe, Gavin Munro (all from the UK) and David Venables (USA) will devote their talks to the subject of sustainability. Zuzanna Skalska and Gaby Fecken van Gestel (both Netherlands) will discuss the homes of the future, while Karl Johan Bertilsson (Sweden) will reveal the latest colour trends and Holly Becker (USA) will inform her audience about storytelling for brands. Journalist Barbara Friedrich will welcome Giulio Cappellini, designer and art director at the Italian cult brand Cappellini, as her guest at the 2020 edition of the now almost legendary Designer’s Talk.

Colour, material, lighting, fragrances, panel discussions and stars

The Stage at imm cologne 2020

The daily program is introduced with an overview of the current trends and innovations at imm cologne 2020 by design journalist and trend researcher Frank A. Reinhardt. Photo: Constantin Meyer, Koelnmesse

Future ways of living, sustainability, materials and colours will also be central issues in The Stage’s other talks once again. The contributions from experts Dr Hildegard Kalthegener, Monika Haag (Renolit) and Markus Frentrop (RAL Colours) will focus on the latest colour trends from different perspectives. Jutta Werner, Sascha Peters and Martin Beeh will address the subjects of sustainable and smart materials. Michael Hilgers, Susanne Brandherm, Professor Axel Venn and Florian Heißen plan to inform their audiences about space optimisation concepts for small homes, the interplay between living and working, and the design of lobbies. The Stage stands ready to host a concentration of female power, with Mara Michel, Gudy Herder, Ursula Geismann and Ann-Kathrin Otto set to present the interiors industry’s top trends. Special interest topics are the remit of Martin Weiser (perception-orientated lighting design), Robert Müller-Grünow (the importance of fragrance) and Thomas Schriefers (musings on upholstery). Ralf Daab will talk to his guests on the subject of the latest developments in hotel and office design. Jeannette Altherr (Studio ADP), Matthias Oesterle (Phoenix Design) and Martin Hirth will join host Frank A. Reinhardt (far.consulting) for a discussion about the influence of designers on the homes of the future.

Interior design tips on the consumer days

The forum also has an exciting programme lined up for the public days of the fair, when interior designers and design professionals will give end consumers useful tips on interior decor, talk about the impact of colours and offer advice on the best ways to furnish bedrooms. Professional interior designers will also give their tips for perfect bathroom configurations. Interested private individuals can submit their bathroom floor plans in advance, with ideas for bathroom layouts then discussed live at the lecture forum during the event.

You will find the complete programme for The Stage here.

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