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The 12-day citywide design festival, Boston Design Week, returns for its fourth year March 29 – April 9, 2017, and will again feature a wide array of programs and events across the design spectrum. All programs, events and exhibitions are open to the public and most are free of charge. A full calendar of events is now available online at RSVPs are required for most of the events, and last year 20% of the events were sold out.

Boston Design Week launches on Wednesday evening March 29 with four Kick-Off events in four parts of the city: Back Bay, Fort Point, South End and Metro West. In the South End, FBN Construction will host a panel on how to avoid a building or remodeling nightmare. Room & Board will host a panel in their Back Bay show room on social media influence, and EM NARI will host their CoTY (Contractor of the Year) awards at the Clarke showroom in Milford. For the Fort Point Channel Kick-Off Event, Artists for Humanity will welcome the public for an Open Studio event showcasing inspired works of art and design by teenagers.

On Thursday, March 30, Sean Cutting of Cutting Edge Homes, a Gold Sponsor for Design Week, teams up with the showrooms at Seven Tide in the Seaport District for a major home design event.  Also in the Seaport, The Innovation and Design Building and Boston Design Center return as sponsors, and will be the site for a number of events starting March 30th, including “Spring Showcase”, a whole day of events on Tuesday April 4.   Control4 will be offering eye-opening tours of an Airstream Trailer retrofitted as a smart home Tuesday through Friday, parked right in front of the Boston Design Center. At the Innovation and Design Building, Neoscape will host an event where audiences will discover virtual reality and the groundbreaking company Continuum will discuss the future of AI and what it means to cities such as Boston.

Events occur throughout the city and Greater Boston. North Shore events include a Meet & Greet Reception with furniture designer Cisco Pinedo at Boston Interiors in Burlington on April 4.  Also on the North Shore, an ongoing exhibit of staggeringly wonderful wearable art called “WOW” is at the Peabody Essex Museum through the entire Design Week timeframe.  On the South Shore, Roomscapes in Rockland is a Silver Sponsor for Design Week and will host The Art of Wine and Chocolate in their expansive 15,000 square foot showroom.

Twenty-three organizations, colleges, museums, and the city of Boston serve as Non-Profit Partners for Design Week. They include: ASID, Boston Preservation Alliance, Boston Society of Architects, Fenway Alliance, The French Cultural Center, Imagine Boston 2030, ICAA, the Junior League of Boston, MIT Museum, Museum of Fine Arts, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Society of Arts & Crafts, and others.  The BDW Non-Profit Partners will be offering a diversity of design programs at their locations, including several aimed at college students.

Design Week culminates with AD20/21: Art & Design of the 20th & 21st Centuries and The Boston Print Fair at The Cyclorama, Boston Center for the Arts. A Gala Preview to celebrate Boston Design Week and benefit Design Museum Boston will take place Thursday evening April 6.   Decorative arts curator and Director of the Fuller Craft Museum Jonathan Leo Fairbanks will be honored as the 2017 Lifetime Achievement recipient at the Gala. The show features close to 50 exhibitors with a selection of modern to contemporary fine art and design. The 10th Anniversary show and sale also hosts the closing programs of Boston Design Week including the Keynote Speaker, noted designer Marshall Watson and Special Guest Speaker Laura Dowling, floral designer to the Obama White House for six years. These and other special programs at AD20/21 are free with admission to the show.

The festival again has three Special Focus Tracks. Events that fall into these tracks have a special designation online to help audiences pinpoint those events. The three tracks for 2017 are Designing Boston, Design and Social Impact, and Professional Focus. Designing Boston will include programs on the future design of our city and historic preservation. Design and Social Impact includes sustainable and renewable design. Professional Focus incorporates industry-networking events, design education, and student contests.

All programs are open to the public, and most are free of charge, but many do require an RSVP to attend. For more information or to receive the Boston Design Week newsletter and calendar of events, visit Follow along on Facebook at or Twitter @BosDesignWeek.