DECOR expo—New York thrives in new home at Javits – Show news

DECOR expo—New York thrives in new home at Javits – Show news – Brief Article

NEW YORK–At the close of last year’s DECOR expo–New York, not even a fortune teller could have foreseen the changes of the coming year. After a sobering attack on the United States and a cancelled DECOR show in Atlanta, DECOR did some shuffling and moved its 2002 New York event to the Javits Center. This brought all its exhibitors together in one building instead of scattered among four piers at the Passenger Ship Terminals, the show’s previous home. In spite of the changes and a separation from Artexpo New York, which moved its show a week earlier, exhibitors, attendees and show officials were generally pleased with the event.

The official numbers from the show–held March 7 to 9–showed a six percent drop in attendance from 2001. “We were up on the amount of framers but down on the amount of art dealers,” said Jaime Gumbita, associate marketing manager for DECOR expo. The 11,037 buyers, however, were ready to buy, according to many exhibitors.

“We did extremely well, setting an all-time show record for sales, not to mention the key customer contacts we made,” said Robert Sher of Walnut Creek, Calif.-based Bentley Publishing Group, which unveiled more than 200 new prints at the show.

“At the DECOR show, there seemed to be a lot of electricity,” said Joanne Chappell of Editions Limited in Emeryville, Calif. “The first day, it was like selling ice to Eskimos. It was probably one of the best reactions [to our posters] I have ever gotten.”

Will Lehman, a first-time exhibitor from Sandwich, N.H., who makes hand-made wooden frames said he reached his pre-show goals, as well. “I did extremely well at the show. I had hoped to find new customers from all over the country and succeeded in doing that. This was my first show as an exhibitor, but from a buyer’s standpoint, I thought it was the most impressive show I have attended,” he said.

Karen Peltier from Hobby Hill Lighting in Sturtevant, Wisc., wasn’t as positive about the weekend, however. “Although, we were busy speaking with many people, the show did not compare to previous shows.”

Regardless of sales and attendance figures, the reviews of the show’s new venue were glowing. Show officials compare it to DECOR expo–Atlanta’s favored move from the Merchandise Mart to the World Congress Center several years ago.

“Exhibitors loved the show at the Javits,” said Gumbita. “It made a big difference for both exhibitors and attendees. It was easier to find exhibitors and products.”

“It is a more professional and grander venue than the Piers and will help the New York show grow in strength,” said Sher.

Wild Apple’s Charlie Kimbell agreed. “It seems to feel brighter and more spacious [than the Piers]. Buyers and sellers liked it a lot,” he said.

The only thing about the Javits exhibitors did complain about was high fees and shortened moving times, which show officials said will not occur in the future. “With our compressed move-in time and show dates, we had challenges to meet, such as labor charges and drayage. In the future, those charges will go down drastically because we will have a longer move-in period and a weekday move-in and move-out to avoid overtime charges,” said Gumbita. “Those savings will be passed along.”

Another first for the New York show was EdExpo, a joint education program sponsored by DECOR magazine and PFM Seminars. EdExpo consisted of 30-plus classes and workshops for the trade. According to show officials, the seminars were well received and attended. The show also featured an industry breakfast with Robert Dederick, an economic expert who worked in the Reagan administration, who gave a talk entitled, “U.S. Economic Outlook: Back to the Drawing Board.”

Along with the new venue and its education programs, talk also swirled around the show’s split from running concurrently with Artexpo. Some said the split led to less buyers attending the show and greater attendee confusion, and they want to see the two shows work toward holding simultaneous events in the future.

What will happen next year remains to be seen. At press time, DECOR expo had not yet settled on its 2003 dates. “We are working with the Javits Center to form a multi-year agreement providing DECOR expo exhibitors and attendees enough space to display and view the art and framing products available,” said Gumbita.

Artexpo officials have secured dates at the Javits for Feb. 27 to March 3, 2003, and said they are working with Javits Center officials to keep the shows together. “We do not have control over the dates at the Javits Center. Javits gave us our dates and offered co-location dates in 2003 to DECOR expo. Javits officials are currently waiting for a response from their show management,” said Artexpo Show Director Doreen Guerin.

Next up for DECOR is its Atlanta show, Sept. 20 to 22 at the Georgia World Congress Center.

COPYRIGHT 2002 Advanstar Communications, Inc.

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