GRUPPE's pastel structures signpost Clerkenwell 2015

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GRUPPE creates pastel-coloured totems to signpost Clerkenwell Design Week

Clerkenwell Design Week 2015: Swiss design studio GRUPPE has installed totems of colourful building blocks on the streets of Clerkenwell during the London district's annual design festival (+ slideshow).

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Photograph by Peter Long

Conceived by GRUPPE as a "little city", the installation comprises pastel-coloured street furniture based on the forms of two Roman architectural elements – columns and forums.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Photograph by Peter Long

Named Vita Contemplativa, the installation was designed to signpost exhibition venue for Clerkenwell Design Week, which runs until 21 May in a patch of central London where many design showrooms and studios are based.

The structures also create a place for exhibition-goers to loiter or shelter from the rain.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Photograph by Peter Long

Each of the towers is covered with pastel-coloured panels produced by facade manufacturer Equitone. GRUPPE used five different shades, all chosen to match the tones of the existing streetscape.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Photograph by Peter Long

These panels make the structures look like they have been constructed from oversized children's building blocks.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015

Columns have been installed at the north and south ends of St John's Road and at the west and east ends of Clerkenwell Road, marking the boundaries of the festival.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015

One kiosk-shaped forum, featuring a stepped platform, stands at the entrance to Farringdon Station, while another can be found on Exmouth Market.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Photograph by Peter Long

GRUPPE worked with engineers and fabricators Blue Engineering and Nicholas Alexander to realise the project and it will remain in place for the duration of the festival.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015

The studio previously teamed up with British artist Richard Wentworth to create another installation in London, a pop-up wooden auditorium hosted in the Central Saint Martin's Granary Building.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015

Photography is by Joanne Underhill unless specified otherwise.

Vita Contemplativa by Gruppe at Clerkenwell 2015
Concept diagram