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Design Descends Upon London

Wallpaper/Ercol Chair Arch, London

Wallpaper/Ercol Chair Arch, London

Following London’s round of Fashion Week comes the London Design Festival, the British ode to Milan’s Salone di Mobile. LDF is host to some of the best in interiors, furniture, and innovation with installations by Marc Newson and Tom Dixon. With events being held all across the capital, visitors are subject to the most unusual, beautiful, and sometimes utterly useless works of art.

The week is composed of dozens of exhibitions in conjunction with partners like Wallpaper (who teamed up with Ercol and produced a Chair Arch at the V&A Museum), Ligne Roset, Established & Sons, and plenty more worth name-dropping in the design world.

A major exhibitor is 100% Design who hosts a spectacular selection of global names in interiors, as is Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design. But despite the main headers of the festival, one particular exhibition stands out. Designersblock, a London-based collective home to several up-and-coming designers across Europe, is featuring such raw talent, it may put  some of the standard design fare to shame.

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Valentina Glez-Wohlers 'Ghost of a Chair', London

Valentina Glez-Wohlers, a Mexico-City born/London based designer, has produced a collection that startled most passersby. The Prickly Pair Chairs, featured in an earlier post, continues to attract attention. But the Ghost As A Chair takes the cake. This acrylic molded chair defies conventions, and though seemingly impractical is surprising in its utility and function.

Another one to watch is Torino-based design firm Nucleo.  The company’s Primitive Collection comprises a sharp series of geometric shapes that take form in lamps, couches, tables, and chairs. Obvious inspiration is taken from Cubism, but what stands out most is the emphasis on minimalism and basic materials. Their cardboard, fiberglass, and flexible white resin table is the show-stopper in the collection. Functionality is called into question because of its avant-garde nature, but once again the collection establishes its practicality with sturdiness and precision.

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Nucleo 'Primitive Collection', Torino, Italy

Minimalism, simplicity, and functionality seem to be the interpretations of choice for the moment. And reusable materials and function-over-fashion approaches have not compromised creative vision in the least. Aesthetic over-achievement is still just as prevalent and as seen at Salone di Mobile earlier this year, it’s plenty of bait to keep us looking forward to next year’s showcase.

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