In a world most people believe is fundamentally not free, i.e. that individual freedom is an illusion even in countries known for centuries of democracy and civil liberties, there is still a non- materialized space for free actions in art and creativity. Even though in different areas of design clients demands largely shape the look of the final product, there are key individuals and groups who are able to achieve creative autonomy, leading the way. The international creative conference of this year’s Belgrade Design Week investigates this very subject and promotes the carefully curated authors who found an authentic way to define such a world, and to create premium products of the human mind that will last longer than the average product in today’s consumer society.

The third and final day of the conference was opened with reflections of entirely new aspects of the FREEDOM SQUARED topic, and in the end, left the possibility for further analysis and reflection. As always, Belgrade Design Week did not end with the completion of the program, instead it boosted the energy of local creatives and their regional and worldwide guests, to create and progress until the next meeting of the greatest design minds of our time in Belgrade.

Belgrade Design Week is a one-off – a unique set-up that is free from the corporate atmosphere that so often pervades other such events. The energy, optimism and warmth of Jovan and his team flows through every event – lectures, workshops, meals & drinks alike!   I’ve never been good at sitting in a dark lecture hall for more than an hour or so at a time but found myself doing three lectures back to back at Belgrade – such was the quality of speakers. Timetabling was crazy at times but at BDW everybody seems happy to ‘go with the flow’ – and has an even better time for doing so. The City of Belgrade should be very proud of this gem!