In contrast to many contemporary art exhibitions, where venues are chosen for their sterile and non-invasive environments to focus attention on the artwork itself, the Deoksugung Project – a project in a association with the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea and Cultural Heritage Administration – instead takes the venue as the focal point and inspiration for the nine pieces you see here.
There is a definitely a trend towards revealing some of the design and making process to help us connect with products. A shiny showroom is no longer enough – we want to see behind the scenes into the workshop too. The stories of where products come from, how they’re made and who made them are increasingly important in how we evaluate their worth.
To this end, Benjamin Hubert, the star of the show at this year’s Tramshed (located this year at designjunction), provided a tantalisingly tiny glimpse into this world.
Daniel Balo, Daniel Eke and Zoltan Kalaszi used only two elements for this praise-worthy installation – lightbulbs and textile. While the bulbs were laid out in a strict grid, the fabric, a translucent material which filled the vast space, waved with the motions of the visitors and the heat from the bulbs.
As Good As New furniture shop is the result of a collaboration between advertising office Gummo, i29 and Krimpex. Interior architects i29 enjoyed success kitting out an office space for Gummo in their now-signature style a few years ago, and followed the same plan here. In their own words: “We find old stuff we like. We fix it. We cover it with…solvent-free grey matter.” That’s where Krimpex comes in, providing the spray technology.
Unable to experience Keiichi Matsuda’s flagship installation, the Veuve Clicquot-commissioned Prism, at the V&A during London Design Festival (too late, too busy we finally gave up), we instead chose to marvel at the Prism Cabinet, a collaboration between Matsuda and Studio Swine – located in the chic lounge/lobby of East London hotel; Andaz Liverpool Street.
Lauren Baker is a delightful little bundle of contradiction. Petite, beautiful, long wavy hair, a minute chiwawa under her arm, and a Geordie accent… she probably wouldn’t like us saying this: but you expect watching The X Factor and reading Closer to be more apt pastimes than decorating skulls with ritualistic patterns.
One of the nice things about London Design Festival, and one of its most painful (if you favour form over function footwear, as I do), is the event’s sheer spread – you always stumble across something you didn’t expect to; A Place to Gather – a showcase or Irish design, presented by The Crafts Council of Ireland – was one of those.
Young designer Klaus Haapaniemi had wowed us earlier in the year, his retina-popping prints the backdrop for Stockholm Design Week’s HEL YES! pop-up – and it’s those visual concepts that are the starting point for this delightful array of hand woven silk brocades and jaw-dropping rugs; the galloping horses of the Purple Haze Rya Rug (manufactured by The Friends of Finnish Handicraft) serving as the show-stopping centrepiece.