Tomorrow the London Design Festival unveils its 16th edition, bringing together a spectacular design offering from across the globe. With a record-breaking 450,000 visitors from over 75 countries last year the ever-expanding festival is now spread over 11 design districts across the capital. Check out our essential edit to help you navigate your week.
Designjunction (20–23 Sep) relocates to the South Bank in 2018 with three new destinations including a purpose-built superstructure at Doon Street hosting 200 international design brands and 70 pop-up shops, as well as the Riverside Walkway and Oxo Tower Wharf locations. Look out for the city of Saint-Étienne’s rainbow-hued ribbon and steel installation ‘Gateway to Inclusion’ on the walkway, curated by Lisa White, Head of Lifestyle and Interiors at WGSN. Also unmissable will be the nine-metre-high ‘Head Above Water’ sculpture by British designer Steuart Padwick and the Mud Shell drone spray emergency housing prototype by Stephanie Chaltiel.
For a multi-sensory spatial experience head to the Squire and Partners ‘Designers’ Dreamscape’ feature at Doon Street in collaboration with the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust and the RIBA. For convivial meet-ups head for the Glenlivet x Bethan Gray-designed bar on the ground floor.
The #Designevery talks programme offers visionary and inspirational thinking across a wide range of themes throughout the day on 20–21 Sep. Highlights include Tej Chauhan, Terri Pecora and Kusheda Mensah on the power of feeling in ‘Designevery Emotion’ (21 Sep, 15.00). Keynote talk ‘Designevery Opportunity’ (21 Sep, 11.00) is chaired by Design Council CEO Sarah Weir with speakers from The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust and the RIBA. (Architects take note: there’s a RIBA London free breakfast preview of Designjunction on 21 Sep.)
Not-to-be-missed Doon Street launches include Plural, the free-standing bathroom range by Terri Pecora for VitrA (F6) and Sum the new lighting collection from Terence Woodgate (G20b). Look out too for Actiu’s technologically innovative carbon fibre chair range (F5) and the iconic Ultima Thule designs for Iittala (C29), which are available in the new rain colour for the first time, and will be on sale at the show.
Highlights at Oxo Tower Wharf, Bargehouse include stories of design development from Vitra in the exhibition ‘The Original. About the power of good design’ (Room 2) and Tej Chauhan’s Soft Power (Room 6), an installation exploring how visual language and efficient production techniques engage broad audiences and create value for brands.
Across town at 100% Design (19–22 Sep) check out an auditorium talk exploring the vision for Olympia London (19 Sep, 11.00) where Trevor Morriss of SPPARC joins Thomas Heatherwick and Max Fraser in conversation alongside Yoo chairman John Hitchcox and Heatherwick Studio’s Eliot Postma. Also at Olympia is the Space Gap panel discussion where White Arkitekter director Geoff Denton will be speaking about ‘The Design Gap’ (20 Sep, 19.00).
While Actiu will be returning to 100% Design this year with its latest collection for the workspace (L560), Samuel Chan of Joined + Jointed will join an array of leading British designers at ‘100% Forward’, an exhibition curated by Barbara Chandler of the London Evening Standard and dedicated to emerging design talent championed by those who launched their career at the show.
And finally, we hope to see you at these events too: the Interni talk (18 Sep, 19.15) to hear Martino Gamper in conversation with V&A curator Johanna Agerman Ross at the Italian Cultural Institute; Global Luxury London LDF cocktail reception (19 Sep, 18.30) for the presentation of the Exteta’s new outdoor living collection by Massimo Castagna; the release of three new Deco-inspired lighting ranges from Bert Frank at Decorex in Syon Park from 16 Sep (F34); and the intriguing sounding installation of ‘Bedfort’ by Disegno and Sam Jacob in Hästens’ Fulham Road store.