From the 16th to the 24th of September London was taken over by exhibitions, events and installations celebrating all things design. On behalf of Tap, Sarah took the time to visit the festival to further our knowledge on how the design industry is growing and expanding, these are some of her highlights.
I began my two day trip at 100% Design, a trade show held at Olympia full of all sorts of high end commercial, residential and product design. Here, I saw a number of emerging trends one of which was the introduction of curves to furniture and space. After a long spell of clean cut minimalism, this was a welcome progression of style for my very square eyes.
Flynn Talbot : Reflection Room
Secondly, I visited Flynn Talbot’s Reflection Room, perhaps the most instagrammed space of the festival. A chamber in the Victoria and Albert Museum was illuminated using blue and orange strip lighting and glossy black reflective panels. This combination created an immersive environment of fragmented light and colour.
Camille Walala : Villa Walala
My third stop was Camille Walala’s Villa Walala. The aim of Villa Walala was to bring playful joy to the everyday. This was carried out by installing a life size inflatable castle covered in bold geometric patterns and colours. The surrounding space in Exchange Square was transformed using vinyl graphics in a similar style. It was here that I noted another key trend, Maximalism – a more is more approach.
Maximalism was in full swing at my final stop ‘London Artisan’ held in the Truman Brewery. Bold colours, patterns and plants were layered on top of each other in several exhibition stands creating an eclectic but cohesive style. This exhibition stretched over three floors crammed with independent craft and studio work. For me, this was the most inspiring event due to the volume and diversity of work on show. I probably, could have done with a second visit to take it all in!
The subject of ‘Future Design’ is something we are hearing a lot about lately. With technology developing so rapidly it would seem the future is full of digital screens and artificial intelligence. However, looking into the future at LDF outlined how we should be considering an entirely different path.
Ecotopia was a multisensory installation exploring utopian thinking and visualising a sustainable future for the planet. This can easily be over looked in the design process when deadlines and budgets are firmly in place. The installation inspired me to question our constant consumption of new things which in turn results in the depletion of resources from our planet. It is clear that we need to consider the life span of a design as well as fulfilling a brief or incorporating new technology.
To conclude, my trip to London Design Festival was very successful. I arrived with an outlook that had become one dimensional, and left with a bank of inspiration and new ideas that I am looking forward to sharing with the rest of the Tap team.
Check out the full booklet of our favourite work here: