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Elle Decor Italia

London Design Festival: 5 tips to not miss a thing!

A bunch of not-to-be-missed installations and exhibitions while hovering around the city during the design kermesse: here’s a short route across hundreds of exciting events


5 unmissable exhibitions taking place concurrently with the London Design Festival 2017. Shown above, Breathing Colours, solo show by Hella Jongerius

The London Design Festival 2017 is about to begin: in a matter of days, London is going to host a hectic agenda of events, exhibitions, site-specific installations, and performances expected to catch and drawn a huge audience of design lovers, British style. There will be plenty of options for all tastes: from installations blending design and social issues, to interactive events focused on the exploration of fresh new trends and vogues, and futuristic initiatives showing the role of science when it comes to highly imaginative design. We picked 5 not-to-be-missed must-sees out of such extensive list of juicy things going on throughout the capital – a synonym with London Design Festival’s pioneering drive, built less on mere products and more on ad hoc creative projects involving design, architecture and fashion talents. In other words, a successful combination of originality and freedom with prestigious institutions, museums and brands. 

The Spaces in Between by CitizenM

The CitizenM Bankside, the affordable luxury hotel at a stone’s throw away from the Tate Modern and Southbank, has appointed British floral designer Carly Rogers Flowers – whose ability to mix a boundless love for flowers with contemporary fashion and art is widely celebrated – to create a large installation within the annual Secret Garden series. The artwork features an ever-changing ensemble of living plants inspired by the autumn equinox on 22 September, and will burst with texture and colour as it threads its way around the inner courtyard at the hotel’s beating heart. The goal? To enhance the clash between the surrounding modern architecture (and interior decor) and wild natural greenery being framed in minimalist, geometrical patterns. Featuring wild flowers, moss, dirt, acorns, fallen branches and red leaves, the work is consistent with the hotel’s eco-friendly philosophy, and thus makes use of strictly seasonal plants that will be resettled in other locations at a second stage.



The Roman Singularity al Sir John Soane's Museum

One of London’s most iconic and historical museums housed in British architect John Soane’s former abode, the venue is going to celebrate the greatness of Rome with an exclusive installation conceived by a talented designer as a quirky homage to the aethernal city. A work by architectural designer Adam Nathaniel Furman, The Roman Singularity results into a city of 3D-printed models, and celebrates Rome as the pilgrimage site for the world’s imagination: the spatial equivalent of the internet, a place in which all of history, art and style is simultaneous and coextensive, merging into one a-historical and liberating atmosphere of storied objects. Created by Furman for the UK Rome Prize for Architecture 2014–15, while living at the British School at Rome, the project is paired with Pasteeshio, a 3D-printed sculpture built in lacquered ceramic that picks up on Soane's creative accumulation of historically resonant fragments into larger, evocative compositions.


Four installations & one expo at the Design Museum

Here follow 4 good reasons to visit the Design Museum’s new venue recently opened on 26h November, 2016 (read also: La prima mostra del nuovo Design Museum). By taking part in this year’s London Design Festival and celebrating the freshly sealed partnership with British Land, the museum staged an eclectic installation of coffee tables, plinths, chairs, benches and a temporary bar corner realised by artist Camille Walala in collaboration with Christopher Spitery and Kirsteen Martin of Studio Design UK. Any marble and stone enthusiast out there is welcomed to visit Set in Stone, a selection of objects by Pritzker Prize-winning Eduardo Souto de Moura and a slide by Elemental (Alejandro Aravena), graphic pieces by Sagmeister & Walsh and a series of domestic objects by Michael Anastassiades, Jorge Silva, Paulo David, Peter Saville and Jasper Morrison. Displayed in various locations both inside and outside the museum, including objects intended for public use, the project is an investigation of the qualities of stone, and the technical means through which it is cut and shaped. Reductionism is just next,  a full size installation of an automotive speed form devised and produced by the Land Rover design team. It shows the design process when developing a new car, which is here represented in its purist form, stripped down to elemental shapes and lines. Chinese furniture company Stellar Works is set to launch A Cultural Iconography, an installation designed by Neri & Hu, Stellar Works’ Creative Directors, featuring material samples, traditional hand tools and bentwood chairs celebrating traditional indigo dyeing processes. Evoking associations between old and new, as well as East and West, this craft-based technique is explored from its historical origins to its contemporary applications. Instead, the ceramics world is the reign of Swiss bathroom specialist Laufen: A Curated Art Show. What? exhibits the work of 12 international designers and design studios who were given an open brief to explore new forms and manufacturing techniques using ceramics. From abstract to figurative, from handmade to digital fabrication, the 17 exhibits on display include aspects of art, sculpture and design. Last but not least, Breathing Colour by acclaimed Dutch designer Hella Jongerius, is an installation-based exhibition that takes a deeper look at the way colour behaves, exploring shapes, materials, shadows and reflections. Combining intriguing shapes with 15-year-long extensive research, this exhibition questions our preconceptions of colour and embraces its imperfection and experimentation. Talk scheduled on Tue. 19th September, 2017, from 6.15OM to 7.30PM.

Photo by Luke Hayes


Design Frontiers at the Somerset House

What happens when 30 international designers gather to push the frontiers of the contemporary design world? Well, Design Frontiers is the answer, a blend of performances, exhibitions, events and installations taking place at the Somerset House during the London Design Festival 2017: from automotive to fashion, product design to graphics, the exhibition delves deep into the future of design through the work of masters of the likes of Vivian Westwood, Gareth Pugh, Benjamin Hubert and Arik Levy, along with prestigious brands such as Kvadrat and Jaguar. Also, don’t you miss the Don’t Feed the Designers installation by PriestmanGoode, featuring designers interacting live with the audience, and Prototypa by studio From Us With Love.


The Rug Company meets the fashion industry

Blowing out 20 candles, London-based British brand The Rug Company is launching a capsule collection of handmade rugs by leading designers such as Paul Smith, Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen, Kelly Wearstler and Suzanne Sharp. The rugs will go hand in hand with a photographic exhibition by Mary McCartney showing the designers in their creative spaces. The rugs and photography will be exhibited during London Design Festival, 16th – 24th September at their showroom at the heart of Chelsea Design Quarter.





by Valentina Mariani e Alec Cinque / 22 September 2017


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