LONDON DESIGN FESTIVAL 2018

V&A – official Festival hub
Citywide
London, UK
15-23 September 2018

London Design Festival’s vision is to celebrate and promote London as the design capital of the world. In 2017, the Festival welcomed a record-breaking 450,000 individual visitors from over 75 countries. These visitors contributed to an overall 991,000 visits to London Design Festival events with 150,000 people passing through Broadgate each day having the opportunity to see Landmark Project Villa Walala. In addition, London Design Festival helped drive a total of 173,250 visits to the V&A over the Festival period with 22% of those surveyed saying they had never visited the museum before and were driven there by the Festival. Flynn Talbot’s Reflection Room and Ross Lovegrove’s Transmission installations were particularly popular.

London Design Festival Director, Ben Evans says “London and Design go hand in hand. It is part of our story. London Design Festival is a platform for 100s of design stories to be told. Each of them talks to an expanding audience hungry for design ideas and enjoying the quality and diversity of what’s on offer. It all confirms London’s status as the global centre of design.”

For the nine days of the Festival, visitors to the V&A will explore a range of special displays and installations throughout the museum, complemented by an extensive programme of events, daily tours, and workshops from Global Design Forum, which in 2017 drew 45 speakers from 13 countries, and 2,800 visitors.

Dr Tristram Hunt, Director of the V&A says: “This year’s programme is bigger and more ambitious than ever, and presents a unique opportunity for leading designers to engage with and respond to the V&A’s world-class collections of art, design and performance. London Design Festival occupies a vital role in London’s thriving design sector, reaffirming London’s position as the world’s leading global design capitals.”

London Design Festival will launch a series of city-wide commissions and installations. Returning for their fifth London Design Festival is The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), with a playful, ambitious and immersive Tulipwood structure, which will be the first installation ever to be located in the new Sackler Courtyard at the V&A.

The Festival receives support from the Mayor’s Office and is delighted to continue its long-standing partnership with British Land as Headline Partner.

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London, said: “London Design Festival is a fantastic event which brings together designers from across the globe and demonstrates the capital’s position as a powerhouse for the creative industries. London is known for its creativity and continues to attract the best companies and talent from around the world. I’m delighted to support London Design Festival, which shows that London is open to great ideas, innovation and people from all backgrounds.”

LANDMARK PROJECTS AND COMMISSIONS

ALPHABET
KELLENBERGER-WHITE
SUPPORTED BY BRITISH LAND
BROADGATE

Known for their playful approach to typefaces, Kellenberger-White has designed a new series of alphabet chairs, supported by Festival Headline Partner British Land. An experiment in folding metal to create a typographic system, the chairs are informed by research into László Moholy-Nagy, Marianne Brandt and Wilhelm Wagenfeld. The result is an alphabet of 26 chairs. Other influences for this usable typeface include Bruno Munari’s photos ‘Seeking Comfort in an Uncomfortable Chair’ (1944), Max Bill and Hans Gugelot’s Ulm Stool (1955), as well as Bruce McLean’s ‘pose’ works of the 1970s.

Each chair is in a different colour, chosen from a specialist paint manufacturerused for industrial metalwork – from International Orange (used for San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge) to Cornflower Blue (the colour of Middlesbrough’s Transporter Bridge). The alphabet will be installed in front of Exchange House in Broadgate which is built on an exposed steel bridge spanning the tracks of Liverpool Street Station.

Chief Executive, Chris Grigg, says: Design is integral to everything we do at British Land. Our partnership with London Design Festival celebrates the world’s leading designers and we are delighted to once again support the Festival.”

TIME FOR TEA
SCHOLTEN AND BAIJINGS
SUPPORTED BY FORTNUM & MASON
FORTNUM & MASON, PICCADILLY

Scholten & Baijings will create a contemporary tea installation in the first floor of the historic Fortnum & Mason flagship store in Piccadilly. Visitors will be invited to watch a live tea party, held four times a day throughout the nine days of the Festival. Using more than 80products, designed by companies from across the globe, Scholten & Baijings will deliver a unique performance on the ritual of tea, within the space.

Fortnum’s iconic Eau de Nil colour provided the inspiration for the installation, with all furniture and products designed by Scholten & Baijings bearing the distinctive green hue. The marble floor and tables in Eau de Nil will be produced by the Italian marble manufacturer Luce di Carrara. Long green wool Colour Block curtains will be woven in the United Kingdom for Maharam, the American textile company, and special, green upholstered chairs will be furnished by the brands HAY, Moroso and Karimoku New Standard. Moreover, in collaboration with Fortnum & Mason, 1616 / arita japan and Maharam Accessories Japan, an exquisite porcelain tea set has been developed just for this occasion and produced in the Japanese Arita region, renowned for its fine porcelain since the 17thcentury. All products will be available to order in store.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with London Design Festival to celebrate the capital’s status as the global centre of design and are excited to house the installation and give a platform to Scholten & Baijings around the topic of the ceremony of tea – a subject very close to our hearts.” says Zia Zareem-Slade, Customer Experience Director, Fortnum & Mason.

TRACE
ARCHITECTURE SOCIAL CLUB
PRESENTED BY THE CROWN ESTATE’S REGENT STREET
REGENT STREET, LONDON
15 – 23 SEPTEMBER 2018

Located in the heart of London, Regent Street is one of London’s leading lifestyle and shopping destinations, and will be home to Landmark Project Trace by Architecture Social Club. Trace is a suspended installation designed to draw the viewer’s attention to the power of the natural environment as it interacts with the built environment, and is inspired by The Crown Estate’s commitment to sustainability.

Regent Street, named after the Prince Regent, was built under the direction of the architect John Nashand its Grade II listed facades represent some of the most distinguished architecture in London. The iconic curve of the street and height of its impressive Regency buildings means Regent Street has a higher wind speed than any other street in Central London.

Reacting to light and wind, the installation renders the invisible visible, by harnessing the street’s wind power and changing light over the course of the day and night to prompt the viewer to consider their own effects on the environments which they inhabit. Rippling movements and hypnotic rhythms create the sense of a living and breathing ecosystem – one that points towards a positive future where sustainable living and working is ubiquitous and beautiful. Through its shape and orientation, Trace encourages the viewer to look upwards to the rooftops of Regent Street. Its swarm-like form and natural materials hint at Regent Street’s rooftop allotments, the habitat of honey bees.

PROJECTS AT THE V&A

Celebrating ten years with the V&A as the official London Design Festival hub, this unique collaboration sees iconic spaces within the Museum transformed each year by an extraordinary collection of specially-commissioned installations and displays by international contemporary designers.

Head of London Design Festival at the V&A, Victoria Broackes, says: ‘Museums are often viewed as keepers of the past, but the London Design Festival at the V&A programme demonstrates the V&A’s commitment to the contemporary and to inspiring the future. This year the programme explores new technologies, sound, digital design and gaming, tying into the V&A’s current exhibitions Videogames: Design/Play/Disrupt and The Future Starts Here. It’s exciting to offer a wide programme to all our visitors, encompassing all that design offers, and indeed will offer as we move into the future.’

MULTIPLY
WAUGH THISTLETON ARCHITECTS
SUPPORTED BY THE AMERICAN HARDWOOD EXPORT COUNCIL and ARUP
THE SACKLER COURTYARD, V&A

London Design Festival have collaborated with Waugh Thistleton Architects, the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) and ARUP to create MultiPly, an interactive modular maze-like installation in The Sackler Courtyard at the V&A, that will encourage visitors to re-think the way homes and cities are designed and built. This pavilion will delve into two of the current global challenges -housing and climate change -and will present the fusion of modular systems and a responsible choice of materials as a vital solution.

This three-dimensional permeable structure will be built out of a re-usable panel system made with 60 cubic metres of American Tulipwood, and it will explore ways in which modular architecture can be developed and enjoyed. “The structure will lead people a merry dance up and down staircases and across bridges exploring space and light,” says Andrew Waugh. “The experience will provide previously unseen framed glimpses of the V&A and the courtyard below.

DAZZLE
PENTAGRAM
SUPPORTED BY BLOOMBERG PHILANTROPIES
ROOM 131A, V&A

London Design Festival is collaborating with 14-18 NOW – the UK’s design and cultural programme for the First World War centenary -on a commissioned project inspired by the First World War concept of Dazzle. The project will see Room 131A at the V&A being ‘dazzled’ throughout the nine days of the Festival.

The idea of ’Dazzle’, an experimental camouflage painted on to the surface of ships, was pioneered by British artist Norman Wilkinson, who prepared numerous designs for vessels, including US merchant ships, targeted by enemy U-boats. Drawing on avant-garde artistic movements such as Cubism and Vorticism, as well as animal camouflage, these bewildering shapes and angles were designed to confuse the enemy as they struggled to make out the dazzle ships against shifting waves and clouds.

Dazzle will be the culmination of the Dazzle Ship series co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW and Liverpool Biennial.

MEMORY & LIGHT
ARVO PART AND ARUP
BRITISH GALLERIES, ROOM 52B, NORFOLK HOUSE MUSIC ROOM, V&A

Estonian born, Arvo Pärt, is the most performed contemporary composer in the world, whose life and music represent a drive for freedom and invention against the odds. This installation – a rare collaboration for Pärt – was specially conceived for the V&A’s Norfolk House Music Room and was inspired by Arvo Pärt’s famous words about his music: “I could compare my music to white light, which contains all colours. Only a prism can divide the colours and make them appear; this prism could be the spirit of the listener.”

Curated by Clare Farrow with Eva Woode in collaboration with Arup’s design team, Arvo Pärt’s words will be brought to life in this multi-sensory installation, in the form of a transparent curved screen representing the prism dividing colours in Pärt’s description; a “viewing and listening bench”; andthe music of Arvo Pärt himself, including“Spiegel im Spiegel” (Mirror in the Mirror) and “Für Alina”.

A FOUNTAIN FOR LONDON
MICHAEL ANASTASSIADES
SUPPORTED BY THE LONDON FOUNTAIN COMPANY
V&A AND BROMPTON DESIGN DISTRICT

The London Fountain Company presents a prototype for a new drinking water fountain designed by Michael Anastassiades and launched in the Brompton Design District and at the V&A. The first fountains willbe sited in the V&A’s John Madejski garden and in a public space in South Kensington at the initiative of South Kensington Estates. The London Fountain Co has been set up by publisher and collector Charles Asprey and curator Jane Withers to reduce disposable plastic bottle use by providing free drinking water. The legacy project aims to revive the drinking fountain culture that has largely disappeared from the city’s public spaces.

THE ONION FARM
HENRIK VIBSKOV
SUPPORTED BY DANISH ARTS FOUNDATION
DANISH MINISTRY OF CULTURE
EMBASSY OF DENMARK, LONDON
V&A GALLERY 94, TAPESTRIES ROOM 94, LEVEL 3
FURTHER SUPPORT
A.P MØLLER FONDEN
AAGE OG JOHANE LOUIS-HANSEN FONDEN BECKET FONDEN
GROSSERER L.F FOGHTS FONDEN
DSV ROAD LIMITED

The Tapestries Gallery is a long, narrow room kept dark to preserve the historical pieces. In this atmospheric space are housed rare tapestries from 1425 onwards – impressive examples of weaving with rich colours, bold motifs and textured dimensions. The length of the room gave rise to the idea of a similarly long installation; around 25 metres from end to end.

Furthermore, the dimmed lighting inspired the idea of growing something in the dark, as if underground. The Onion Farm by Henrik Vibskov is a light, dynamic, Mikado-like structure that spins along the gallery. Industrial, colorful brushes and red textile ‘onions’ are seemingly hanging and growing from the structure. The installation will, in line with the Tapestries, create a strong tactile impression, but, in its materiality, contrast with the space. This sense of an ancient weaving technique will be reflected in the new work, composed of colorful spindles spun together with a knitted textile.

As with many of Vibskov’s installations, everyday objects are transformed, put together in a new way to give viewers a point of recognition. In this piece, onions hanging in the dark form a structure, which combined with the industrial brushes, simulate the natural conditions in which they grow, while the brushes, with their large circles of spiny prickly hairs, create a vibrating membrane along the structure. The idea of using design to imitate and comment on everyday life draws clear parallels with the tapestries and their role of reflecting 15th-century people’s perspective on life.

While the tapestries cannot be touched, except by restorers, The Onion Farm is meant to be interactive; visitors are invited to touch and move through it as they walk along the gallery. In some places the passage narrows and forces the visitor to be brushed as they move through. Inspired by the depiction of grand nature scenes in the Tapestries and their variety of wildlife tableaus, this installation, in the same way, refers to nature elements, shapes and colors but perhaps also comments on the hyper-industrialized state of agriculture today.

BRITISH LAND CELEBRATION OF DESIGN MEDAL EXHIBITION
2018 MEDAL WINNERS
BRITISH GALLERIES, ROOM 55, CLORE STUDY AREA, V&A

For the 4th year running, to correspond with the British Land Celebration of Design, London Design Festival will present an exhibition featuring work by the four London Design Medal Winners.

The Medal Exhibition illustrates the breadth of work and scale of achievement of each of the winners and celebrates the bestowed awards: Emerging Talent, Design Innovation, London Design Medal and Lifetime Achievement.

For the second year, the exhibition will be located in the Clore Study Area at the V&A.

OTHER INSTALLATIONS AT THE V&A WILL INCLUDE:
  • The Art of Music in the Digital Age: A series of world-first designs by musician and technology innovator Beatie Wolfe supported by Nokia Bell Labs
  • The Patent Library at the V&A: An open and hackable patent library created by the Institute of Patent Infringement
  • ‘The Transubstantiation of Knowledge’: A mixed reality site-specific installation by Rachel Ara, V&A Research Institute Artist in Residence, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

GLOBAL DESIGN FORUM

Global Design Forum is London Design Festival’s curated thought leadership programme, celebrating design and the minds shaping its future.

Taking place throughout the Festival at the V&A, the Forum features a unique mix of talks, debates, tours and workshops that together reflect the most innovative thinking in the world of design today.

Today more than 50 of designs most exciting and influential thought leaders have been announced to speak as part of the 2018 programme.

Speakers announced include Lord Richard Rogers, Ilse Crawford, Rankin, Marina Willer and Morag Myerscough.

From 15–23 September speakers from all corners of the global design community will share new perspectives on designing for a shifting future.

In 2017, 45 speakers from 13 countries shared their perspectives on designing for how we live today, and the world we want to inhabit tomorrow. Previous speakers include Camille Walala, Es Devlin, Brent Huberman, Paul Priestman, Michael Beirut, Zaha Hadid, Jaime Hayon, Peter Savile, Thomas Heatherwick, Faye Toogood, Edward Barber & Jay Osgerby.

DESIGN DISTRICTS, DESIGN DESTINATIONS AND DESIGN ROUTES

As a citywide event, London Design Festival is an essential platform for the capital’s major tradeshows taking place across London, including: 100% Design, Decorex International, design junction, Focus/18 and London Design Fair. These shows feature work from a local and international network of both new and established exhibitors.

In 2018, there will be ten official Design Districts from East to West; North to South. Design Districts are areas where there are distinct concentrations of design activity and events that can be traversed easily on foot. Each District is organised locally and independently via the platform of London Design Festival. This year will see four new design districts taking part in the Festival; Fitzrovia Design District, Marylebone Design District, Regent Street and St James’s Design District, and West Kensington Design District.

They join Bankside Design District, Brompton Design District, Clerkenwell Design Quarter, Mayfair Design District, Pimlico Road Design District and Shoreditch Design Triangle.

In addition, we are delighted to welcome Paddington Central Design Route as a new Design Route alongside Brixton Design Trail.