Boston Design Week is back for a special fall festival

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Allison Caccoma is one of the designers on “The New Traditionalists” panel.

Boston Design Week is back with a special fall season running from Sept. 17 through Oct. 16. This festival features more than 50 in-person, virtual and outdoor events.

Under the theme “Fall into Art and Design,” this three-week design festival offers a range of programs featuring nationally-known guest speakers, panel discussions, design tours, museum exhibitions and more.  

Boston Homes is one of the media sponsors of Boston Design Week.

The Music Room at the 1857 Gibson House in Back Bay.

Boston Design Week has also invited six other art and design festivals to cross-promote their September and October events, linking website visitors to hundreds of other events near and far: Design Edge, Design Week Rhode Island, Atlanta Design Festival, Boston Fashion Week, Cape Ann Plein Air festival, Design Week Mexico and the Fenway Alliance’s 20th anniversary ‘Opening Our Doors’ festival.  

All events are open to the public and most are free. The full calendar of events is now online at For more information, call 617-363-0405. 

“We want Boston Design Week to be known as a portal to all things art and design,” said co-producer Tony Fusco. “Our partner events are simultaneously offering hundreds of art and design events.”  

Designer Bath showroom in Watertown will host a panel with TV host and producer Jenny Johnson and her husband, writer and editor Robert Cocuzzo.

Along with his partner Robert Four, Fusco & Four/Ventures has grown Boston Design Week during the past eight years, becoming an active member of World Design Weeks - an international coalition of more than 30 design festivals around the world.   

Boston Design Week’s mission is to increase public awareness and appreciation of all aspects of design, foster recognition of the vital role design plays in people’s lives and bring new audiences to a wide array of design industries and organizations. 

This fall, attendees are invited to experience groundbreaking ideas in architecture, interior design, placemaking, plein air painting, teen programs and to enjoy art and design tours, historic design, auction previews, galas and more.   

Artists For Humanity, Boston – Teen artists gather at Artists for Humanity for one of their Open Studio events.

Featured events this fall include online interviews with two internationally-known architects, one being Hiroshi Okamoto, principal of OLI Architecture who apprenticed with I. M. Pei for many years before starting his own firm. OLI's portfolio of projects blurs the line between architecture and art - buildings that are in themselves sculpture.

There is also an interview with Brett Rhode, director and founding partner of Austin-based Rhode Partners. Rhode’s experience with university architecture, designing for cities in the wake of climate change and the recently completed skyscraper, The Independent – the tallest building west of the Mississippi – are just a few of his notable successes. 

For interior design lovers, Boston Design Week kicks off with a virtual panel titled "The New Traditionalists," featuring three leading designers who combine distinctively classic taste with new ideas and engaging twists on well-loved themes and details. 

Ashley Whittaker (New York), Allison Caccoma (San Francisco) and Tiffany LeBlanc (Boston) share their tips and secrets on how to create tailored rooms that feel both familiar, yet modern. Traditional comfort continues to ring true, but engages people’s eyes with up-to-date color and patterns. 

Ashley Whitaker’s new book is “The Well Loved House.” She is one of the designers on “The New Traditionalists” panel.

Other interior design events include the opening of the new Minotti Boston showroom on Stuart Street in Boston. Visitors will be among the first to explore this Italian company with an international reputation for contemporary furniture design.

Established in 1948 by Alberto Minotti, the small-scale artisan workshop grew quickly and is now in its third generation of the Minotti family.  

In addition, at a special in-person reception at the Designer Bath showroom in Watertown, join TV host and producer Jenny Johnson and her husband - writer and editor Robert Cocuzzo - with their notable interior designer Kate Maloney Albiani for a fun and informative talk on all things home.  

Beyond Walls in Lynn creates new urban environments through art and design, working with the local community.

In Fall River, Merida has reimagined textile design and manufacturing. Each of their rugs is woven to order and inspired by the beauty of natural yarns, the soulfulness of craftsmanship and the uplifting spirit of design. Through live presentation with video from Merida’s workshop, installer Bob Margies and textile designer Gabrielle Ferreira will present a masterclass on designing custom stair runners that lead the eye from riser to tread.  

A variety of tours, museums and other events are also on offer, including two specialty tours of the magnificently intact and furnished Victorian Gibson House on Beacon Street in Boston. One tour focuses on the “Upstairs Downstairs” lives of the servants while the other delves into the previously less-well known gay subculture of the house’s final owner, Charlie Gibson.   

Boston gallerist Judith Reilly, who runs a fine art gallery at the Four Seasons Hotel on Boylston Street, has invited two of her notable artists, Stan Moeller and Heidi Lorenz, to do plein air painting demonstrations for a day in the Public Garden across the street. This style of open-air painting became a strong feature of French Impressionism. 

The new Minotti Boston showroom is on Stuart Street in Bay Village/Back Bay.

Other events include an art and architecture tour of the M.I.T. campus, an open studio with teen designers and painters at Artists for Humanity, a program on urban placemaking by the groundbreaking non-profit organization Beyond Walls in Lynn, and many others. 

All Boston Design Week programs are open to the public and almost all are free of charge, but many do require an RSVP to attend, and virtual events do sell out.

For more information or to receive the Boston Design Week eNews, visit Also follow along on Facebook at, Twitter @BosDesignWeek or Instagram @BostonDesignWeek.