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20th London Design Festival offers global audience vision
September 6, 2022
September 6, 2022
London Design Festival marks its 20th anniversary with programme of events, exhibitions and installations, many of which will engage with questions of circular design and diversity.
The Festival, which runs from Sept 17 to 25, provides a platform for designers and creative businesses to showcase their work, and invites a global audience to discover the breadth and diversity of London and UK design talent.
Promoting London as the design capital of the world, the 2019 Festival attracted 1.1 million visits by 600,000 visitors, with more than one third of them from overseas, representing 75 countries. It contributed an estimated £118 million in GVA to the London economy and 2,992 FTE jobs.
At a time when climate change, pollution and resource depletion intensifies, there is also a need to drive towards a circular and more sustainable economy. With that in mind, this year’s Festival will seek to platform new thinking and creative concepts that demonstrate the crucial role of design today.
The Global Design Forum: This thought provoking programme of keynotes, talks and panel discussions takes place daily at the V&A museum and supported by headline partner SAP. It will feature over 70 speakers and bring together different creatives to share new perspectives on how design can be more accessible, inclusive, sustainable and at the forefront of change. Each day of the Forum will explore key themes in design including regenerative futures; new possibilities in digital design; identity and inclusivity; design to shape behaviour; connecting communities; participation in design, and design for crisis and recovery. Speakers from all corners of the global design community representing a range of disciplines will come together including Alexandra Deschamps Sonsino, Annie Atkins, Foday Dumbuy, Sandy Powell, Saskia Sassen, Thomas J Price and Veronica Ryan.
The V&A hub: As the official Festival Hub, the V&A will showcase a number of installations and displays by contemporary international designers. This year's projects are centred around the theme of transformation; from the transformation of molecules and material to the regeneration of the planet itself. Highlights include 'R for Repair', a project which will see broken household objects handed over to designers to be not just repaired, but creatively renewed, and the transformation of the museum's John Madejski Garden into an immersive glass-blowing studio, with common copper and glass antiquities returned to their raw materials and used to create a series of new artefacts.
Design Districts, Design Fairs and Partners: There will be over 300 different events, exhibitions and installations, with the majority of activity free to access, giving Londoners and visitors an opportunity to experience, discover, and be inspired by world class design. These include Machine Shop Special Effects (pictured below), featured as part of the Park Royal Design District.
Landmark Projects: Swivel, a work by Rotterdam-based designer Sabine Marcelis and supported by Almacantar, will be located at St Giles Square, in one of central London’s most traversed neighbourhoods. This long-term public project celebrates materiality and movement and will invite visitors to come together in the space. In addition, Sony Design will present INTO SIGHT at Cromwell Place, a life-sized media platform, which plays on sensorial effects that transform simple boundary surfaces into an infinite vista through shifting light, colour and sound.
LSI Stone will work with Stanton Williams and Webb Yates in collaboration with experimentadesign to realise Henge, a project in Canary Wharf inspired by the Neolithic stone structures that "create a space separate from the outside world". The circular form will create a focused gathering space with a clear identity. Henge will be seen as a participatory sculptural form that invites those who work, live and visit the area to engage with it creatively.
Ben Evans CBE, London Design Festival Director, said: "On our 20th anniversary we want to take stock and move forward to ensure the Festival continues to support the design community, commissions and showcases new ideas, and reflects on the key issues from technology to sustainability to wellbeing so that the next 20 years are as fruitful as the past 20”.