23rd September 2016
If you haven’t had a chance to wind your way through the 100s of events at this year’s London Design Festival to come up with a weekend plan, don’t worry. Seymourpowell have criss-crossed the city to curate their top picks for your weekend viewing pleasure.
Tord Boontje throws open his studio space to assemble a series of objects from London designers who take a more poetic approach to tech. It’s an eclectic collection featuring musical instruments which push tactility back into electronic music making, lamps that glow with soul, timepieces that morph to reflect fleeting moments and a delightful kinetic sculpture that playfully reimagines the application of scent. The show is a celebration of the human - from the curiously experimental, to the emotionally attuned and the mischievously fun, it hints towards a future that re-wires cold consumer electronics and infuses them with more human sensibilities.
23 Charlotte Road
If you’re interested in the process of taking an idea to market then nip across the street from Electrocraft and pop in to Map’s Pop Up shop. Here you’ll find 6 projects that reveal the stories and design process behind some of the products they’ve helped successfully launch on Kickstarter. City cyclists should make a beeline for ‘Beeline’, the digital navigation tool that takes its wayfinding cues from a compass. Digital natives should check out Kano, the buildable computer that helps decode coding. Alongside these established projects, you’re also invited to preview two new products, Brizi and Ding, that will be launching soon on the crowdfunding site. Brands that show their workings make themselves more tangible and accessible and it’s lovely to see a show that puts an emphasis on openness and the strength of collaboration.
31 Charlotte Road
On Redchurch Street, Studio Furthermore and Prin are showcasing their latest material explorations. Working with porcelain and foam, Furthermore creates homeware pieces that challenge our understanding of this traditional material and perceptions around hard and soft, light and heavy. Prin on the other hand works with how materials change over time, taking metal waste from key cutters and letting the rust that is formed (when mixing it with gypsum) create a distinct aesthetic. Experimenting with materials to truly understand them and to generate unique visual expressions is something more craft-based designers have long embraced, and excitingly we’re finally starting to see how this translates into more mass-produced objects.
PRIN London and Studio Furthermore
Studio 1.1 Gallery
57a Redchurch Street
The Aram Gallery presents the first European solo show by design duo Raw Color, a studio working across photography, graphic design and material design with colour being the common thread that weaves the disciplines together. Suitably called ‘Blend’, the pieces on display not only show multiple ways of how beautifully colour can materialise and transform in different mediums, but also how seamlessly these contemporary designers adapt a multi-disciplinary approach.
The Aram Gallery
110 Drury Lane
The Brompton Design District’s Cromwell Place hosts a plethora of designers and thinkers. Several themes are explored: the appeal of utopian thinking in envisioning a sustainable future in Ecotopia; Experimental Materials and Textiles by UMPRUM, and the future of the workspace where Opendesk and Ineke Hans present the work of four designers under the title ‘Furniture is not Working’. Alongside the more aesthetically focused product launches, the festival is also a platform for designers tackling some more complex challenges.
3 Cromwell Place
At SEE••DS Martino Gamper has gathered some of his closest design compadres for a double show. The front room hosts a collaborative project where the collective have produced ceramic pieces, all for sale signed by the group… or pay the double and find out who has made your piece! The rest of the gallery displays pieces under each designer’s name, see if you can spot who’s visual style shows through in the collective’s ceramic pieces. Aiming to highlight inconsistencies in the ‘design system’ and explore collaboration, this exhibition challenge norms around design versus art, value and authorship.
3 Launceston Place
Go south to Peckham to wander through the Mirror Maze created by artist Es Devlin for Chanel and i-D magazine, as part of their Fifth Sense series celebrating creativity from women in arts and culture across the world. The multi-room installation sets out to explore scent as a high-speed transit through memory and identity - two themes that are so prominent in our culture of capturing and sharing photos of ourselves – which of course this visually stunning installation lends itself brilliantly to.
Copeland Park & Bussey Building
133 Copeland Rd Peckham
Many major events take place this weekend with the festival officially finishing on the 25th September. So what are you waiting for? Leave the Netflix binge until next weekend and get yourself topped up with a healthy dose of creative culture. See you there!