2021 Festival | DesignPhiladelphia

2021 Festival


The Center for Architecture and Design is excited to present the upcoming 2021 DesignPhiladelphia Festival, October 6-17, 2021, with Thomas Jefferson University once again supporting as title sponsor. We are hopeful and optimistic that there will be more in-person events this year, but we will follow the City of Philadelphia and the Center for Disease Control's lead on guidelines and restrictions. We will be back at Cherry Street Pier, serving as our hub for installations and exhibitions as well as the site of our hybrid Livestream and in-person (hopefully) Kickoff Party on October 6 from 6:30 - 8:00 PM. We are planning for a lot of exciting things this year in our Re-Emergence from 2020. Here are some of the details we have set:

DesignPhiladelphia KickOff Party, Sponsored by Parallel Edge – October 6, 2021 | 6:00 – 9:00 PM

The hybrid KickOff Party will launch the festival on October 6, 2021, at 6:30 PM as an in-person event at Cherry Street Pier, but we are also planning to Livestream a portion of the event in anticipation of capacity restrictions and general wariness of attendees in large crowds. We are still working through many of the finer details and will provide updates on the website and through emails and social media.

Best in Emerging Design Competition – October 6 - 17, 2021

This design competition invites regional designers and design companies to submit innovative, high-quality products that have a positive impact on daily life. The competition shines a spotlight on Philadelphia’s design excellence and provides a platform for designers and companies whose solutions are ready to scale. Finalists of the competition will be on display at Cherry Street Pier throughout the duration of the Festival. The winning design solution will be announced at the start of the Festival and will receive a cash prize of $5,000. 

Collab Program – TBD

Every year, Collab, a group of design professionals and enthusiasts who support modern and contemporary design at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, partners with the Center for Architecture and Design to co-host a conversation with a noteworthy Philadelphia designer. 

Designing Motherhood Exhibition – October 6, 2021 2:30 - 4:00 PM (ZOOM)

The Designing Motherhood Exhibition, coming to Philadelphia in 2021, highlights the arch of human reproduction and will manifest as a multi-site exhibition (at the Mutter Museum and the Center for Architecture and Design), book (MIT Press), and series of public programs helmed by Philadelphia-based thought leaders, Maternity Care Coalition (MCC). MCC seeks to improve the health and well-being of pregnant people and parenting families for an equitable future.


Much, much more to come. Stay tuned!