The Dezeen team are reporting from the 21st edition of London Design Festival in the British capital (16-24 September). Read on for all the coverage from Tuesday 19 September.
5:00pm Dezeen has spoken to Jan Hendzel Studio founder Jan Hendzel about their 11:11 exhibition, which pairs 11 established designers with 11 emerging designers at this year's LDF.
Emerging talents require nurture
"Our emphasis was on creating a platform to support the grassroots and emerging creators of south London," he explained.
"By forging new relationships and connecting the established design industry with up-and-coming makers, 11:11 aims to create a more inclusive and diverse future in design."
Hendzel explained how LDF creates space for emerging talents to showcase their work, but often focuses on university-educated designers.
"The importance of offering a platform to emerging talent, especially that of grass roots and local level creatives, is to offer empowerment and to demonstrate that design is a profession that can offer meaningful and exciting careers," he said.
"When the design festival rolls into town, yes, I believe we do have platforms for emerging creatives, however one big issue is that design shows can be cost prohibitive and often focus on university-educated people, which by default puts the profession at the more elitist end of things.
If you don't have cash or a degree, finding a platform can be difficult
"If you don't have cash or a degree then finding a platform to celebrate your ideas can be difficult."
He believes that LDF and others can do more to support emerging talents, and suggests that providing free space for exhibitions and installations would be a way of doing this.
"Emerging talents require nurture, they require safe places to practise their respective disciplines and they require opportunities for growth through connections and collaborations with established practitioners to elevate their craft," Hendzel continued.
"A great opportunity would be to find and offer more free spaces to emerging groups, alongside bursaries and support packages in how to promote your event and develop your respective craft within a design district."
Hendzel was speaking with Dezeen editor Tom Ravenscroft.
4.30pm Among the pieces on display in designer Lee Broom's Shoreditch showroom is Chant, a suspended lamp made from Polish pressed-glass bricks, powder-coated steel and extruded aluminium.
According to Broom, the light was designed to be specifically viewed from below and mimic the appearance of glass brick above a basement.
"It has elements of an industrial quality," the designer told Dezeen at his showroom – Jane Englefield
4:00pm To mark the 10th anniversary of Buster + Punch, the design brand has launched its first chair at LDF.
It's us in a chair
Designed by Buster + Punch founder Massimo Buster Minale, the Chopper chair is a reimagining of a 1973 chair designed by his father Marcello Minale – a designer who collaborated with iconic brands including Valentino, Armani and Fendi.
"It's a beautiful chair, amazing backstory, great design, and in my dad's manufacturing style – which has died in recent years; using oversized metal frames with a little Massimo twist and lovely details," Massimo Buster Minale told Dezeen.
"It comes in a beautiful light black chrome, which is quite unusual, and makes it feels a little bit more futuristic, a bit more fashion."
The chair marks a shift for the brand, which focuses on "home details and functional fittings".
"It's our first chair, which is really exciting because it's a very competitive world – but it's a whole new world," said Massimo Buster Minale.
"Hopefully it all stacks up, and stacks up well – also the chair is stackable," he quipped.
"It's us in a chair – it's very metal heavy, it's very hard to make, it's got some beautiful metal details and leather and has a great story." Read more about the Chopper chair ›
Spread across a single room concealed by red curtains, the show is a playful imagination of London's first Closed Curtain Club – "established to facilitate the behind-curtain fancying of furniture".
There are pieces on display from both established and emerging designers. These include a pair of powder-coated steel door knockers by Michael Marriott titled A Lovely Pair of Knockers and Confession Bucket, a galvanised steel bucket with confession grill holes by Poppy Booth – Jane Englefield
3:00pm This year's London Design Festival has seen a number of brands travel from across the globe to show their designs in the UK capital.
"We're really proud to be here with awesome partners like Tom Dixon," co-founder Scott Bridgens told Dezeen. "This is a unique opportunity for us to engage with the UK design public."
"The first show that Resident ever did was in 2011 at LDF, so it holds a pretty special place in our heart," he added. "And this is 12 years since the day that we first started our brand so it means a lot to us, it's very sentimental – London's like our home away from home."
Resident's pieces will remain on show at the Tom Dixon space at Coal Drops Yard for six weeks – Cajsa Carlson
2:30pm "An industry that fails to reflect the people it serves will quickly become irrelevant." This is the message behind Design Can's "Are you using your power?" poster campaign dotted around London.
We are challenging you to champion underrepresented talent – at times, you may need to stand aside
The campaign calls for greater equality across the design industry and for it to confront its prejudices and eliminate discrimination.
"We are challenging you to champion underrepresented talent, commission outside the same old networks and hire for fresh perspectives. At times, you may need to stand aside."
The posters include a QR code that links to a list of tips for how to implement change when commissioning or recruiting, as well as acknowledging one's own privileges and empowering others – Max Fraser
Created locally by 22 emerging London designers, the products include a bench shaped like a bike saddle from sculptor Jess Flood-Paddock and a chair made from storm-felled London plane trees and 3D-printed rocks from the bottom of the Thames by architecture studio CAN.
"What we were looking for is to actually get a more diverse crowd of creatives working for us," IKEA's Marcus Engman told Dezeen.
"The intent with Atelier100 is to find another creative scene that more represents the many people that are actually buying from our companies," he added.
"London is one of the most diverse cities in the world, so it's really interesting to see what we can do here."
1:00pm The Vitra and Artek Hackability of the Stool exhibition at the Vitra showroom showcases 100 variations of Alvar Aalto's Stool 60, each presented in a new form or offering an alternative function.
Reinventions of the stool include it serving as a table, record player, wine and glass holder, vase, ironing board and clock, while functional stools are covered in faux fur or feature rocking chair legs – Sophie Chapman
The trio recorded a discussion centred around Tilly, the world's first AI designer developed by Talbot and her design practice Studio Snoop.
Tilly has designed five "nature-centred" products, the prototypes of which are on display at Dixon's HQ during LDF.
The discussion focused on the scope and limitations of AI tools in the development of new design projects. The recording will be available to watch as part of Dixon's broadcast series from the festival – Max Fraser
11:30am Through the door to the garden of Centre 151, a Southeast Asian community charity space in Hackney, Dezeen's Tian Lin discovered the exhibition Mother Goddess of the Three Realms, which presents works, crafts and knowledge of rope-making from UK and Vietnam-based artists and craftspeople.
Making yarn is old and universal
This cross-cultural exhibition – including interactive displays – celebrates the shared heritage of rope-making techniques, from the ancient to the modern.
"It's also about the relationship with the land, working with the land and sourcing local materials, looking at practitioners from both countries, of different generations but doing very similar things," curator Vickie Hayward told Dezeen.
As part of the exhibition a film plays showcasing how Blue Hmong craftswomen of Pa Co Village in Vietnam make ropes and how a maypole-dance-like performance developed from this creative process.
"Making yarn is old and universal. The craftswomen know so much about yarn and weaving and we do know as well in our way. Together we were thinking through making, and building a bond regardless of language and geographic barriers,’ said Yesenia Thibault-Picazo, one of the artists behind the film.
10:45am Speaking on a panel at the opening of her brightly colourful Nice to Meet You Again installation, which was created in partnership with car brand Mini, Morag Myerscough explained how electric cars were changing city. Not only are they improving air quality, but also sound quality.
I love how electrification changes the sound of the city
"I'm very pro electrification as I love how it changes the sound of the city," she said.
She continued by explaining how she created the installation, which contains bright building-like forms and lots of planting, to offer a glimpse into an alternative way of living in the city.
Myerscough recalled her experience of the pandemic when she was first able to hear birds in the city. She believes this could become common in a future where the noise of fossil fuel-powered cars has disappeared, so she included bird song as part of the audio for the installation.
"The installation comes from being a Londoner and imagining how we can live slightly differently," she said.
We are in a golden age of design
The talk continued to discuss the wider impacts of technology, with fellow panelist LDF director Ben Evans optimistic about the potential of AI and emerging technologies.
"We are in a golden age of design," he said. "AI is a tool not a competitor."
"It is about learning to use technology in a way that doesn't control us," he continued. "There are a lot of positive things about now, and it is about embracing and understanding these."
10:30am Also from last night, Dezeen welcomed over 180 guests to celebrate London Design Festival at hotel One Hundred Shoreditch.
Guests enjoyed the sunset over the London skyline, with drinks provided by Laurent Perrier.
10:00am Nearly 200 individuals from across London's design scene came together last night for the announcement of the winners of this year's London Design Medal.
London Design Festival's annual award celebrates individuals who have made a significant contribution to design in the capital as well as further afield.
Dezeen's editorial director Max Fraser attended the dinner and ceremony at the Christopher Wren-designed St Stephen Walbrook Church in the heart of the City of London.
The London Design Medal was given to Hanif Kara, the design director and co-founder of AKT II.
9:30am Sustainably made pasta, a first-aid kit for furniture and a power bank for rough sleepers – charged using London's Santander city bikes – are among the projects featured in the Design Transforms exhibition at Central Saint Martins.
It brings together a range of work made over the last decade by students, alumni and staff of CSM's product, ceramic and industrial design programme, exploring how design can make a positive social impact.
The show celebrates ten years since the course was awarded the Queen's Anniversary Prize – the highest national honour that can be awarded to an educational institutions, rewarding an outstanding contribution to the UK's creative economy – Jennifer Hahn
8:30am The Dezeen team reported from Monday at London Design Festival yesterday (18 September).
Located under a railway arch next to London Bridge station, the exhibition is made up of 1:1 scale, sculptural chair-prototypes or models still in progress.
The show features a range of projects, including an aluminium chair by Sara Afonso Sternberg made from anti homeless armrests salvaged from park benches and a lumpy, 3D-printed armchair covered in a digitally shrink-wrapped skin by Daniel Widrig.
Exhibiting both established and emerging designers, the show highlights the shifting boundaries of what a chair can be.
All times are London time.
The lead image is by Jane Englefield from the Prototype/In Process exhibition at Borough Yards.