written by:
September 12, 2014
Our picks for the must-see showcases, installations, and more at one of the fall's blockbuster design fairs.
Pencil Sharpener for Norman Foster for exhibition of industrial design at Victoria Albert Museum

The Wish List at the Victoria and Albert Museum (September 13-21)

Consider it a fringe benefit of being part of the design cognoscenti. This quirky group exhibition, sponsored by Benchmark and the American Hardwood Export Council, asked famous designers and architects such as Zaha Hadid and Paul Smith to put in a request for a personal object, which would then be created by an up-and-comer. The spherical pencil sharpener, above, is Norie Matsumoto's attempt to spruce up Norman Foster's workspace.

 

Courtesy of 
Petr Krejci
1 / 10
Hedda Torgersen's Boo Lamp in porcelain and ash

100% Norway at Tent London (September 18-21)

Set up in an exhibtion space designed to replicate Norway's edgy landscape, this showcase of the country's talen at the Old Truman Brewery will focus on the playful and experimental side of emerging product design. Hedda Torgersen's Boo lamp, for example, a flat-pack figure that could be a future Pixar co-star, exudes charm in porcelain and ash wood.

Courtesy of 
Bjarte Bjørkum
2 / 10
Double Space for BMW by Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby

Double Space for BMW at the Victoria and Albert Museum (September 13-21)

Extending the art-as-mirror metaphor across a storied museum space, designers Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby built a pair of massive kinetic mirrors that will bend and distort the way viewers encounter the Raphael Gallery.

 

 

 

Courtesy of 
Double Space for BMW
3 / 10
Undergrowth Console with moss in resin by Dolomyth

Elements of Craft at Mint Gallery (September 13-21)

Amid a gallery show focused on the influence of craft on design, the organic overtones in the work of Andrea Forti and Eleonora Dal Farra, who collaborate as Alcarol, stand out as gorgeous examples of nature's inherent beauty. Their new Undergrowth console, edged with moss frozen in resin, adds an unexpected green touch.

Courtesy of 
Alcarol
4 / 10
Bem Robinson Luna Coffee Table

NOISEfest14 at the V&A 2014: Future Design Stars (September 16)

The rush of discovering new talent is one of the London Design Festival's main draws. The Noise Festival, a charity set up to support and showcase emerging talent, asked design luminaries to hand-pick a new class of young talent. Curators will discuss their selections at a special event at the V&A on the 16th. The work of the new designers can be found at an outdoor exhibition across the capital on Sumner Street, Better Bankside. Above is the Luna Coffee table, featuring two removeable bowls, by 22-year-old Nottingham Trent graduate Bem Robinson. 

 

 

Courtesy of 
Noise Festival
5 / 10
Buster & Punch industrial Hero Lamp

lightjunction at designjunction at The Sorting Office (September 18-21)

A fest-within-a-fest dedicated to high-end illumination, lightjunction showcases new designs and installations from dozens of brands, such as Blackbody, Anglepoise, and Jake Dyson. The Hero Lamp (above) by Buster & Punch exemplifies the brand's steampunk aesthetic.

Courtesy of 
Buster & Punch
6 / 10
Metal wall organizer at Ace Hotel Shoreditch

Fabrica Extra-Ordinary Gallery at the Ace Hotel Shoreditch (September 16-21)

The Shoreditch hub during the design festival, the Ace Hotel will be buzzing with exhibitions and installations. The Extra Ordinary Gallery, organized by the Fabrica Design Studio, fuses up-and-coming design talent and Italian craftsmanship for a new view on everyday objects. Federico Florianai's BU! wall organizer recalls the ornate railings found across southern Italy. 

 

Courtesy of 
Fabrica Features
7 / 10
Screwdriver dressed up as a female character

Tooled Up at Art&Graft (September 12-20)

Amidst more sophisticated displays of design and craftsmanship, the colorful Tooled Up exhibiton at a Shoreditch studio gives designers free rein to turn toolbox standards into playful pieces more at home on Saturday morning television. "Duchess" transformed a screwdriver into an "eminent female character," according to designer Kustaa Saksi.

Courtesy of 
John Hooper
8 / 10
Large Pleat Mirror Panel by AfroditiKrassa

Tent London and Super Brands London (September 13-21)

These twin trade shows are must-sees simply for the sake of scope, functioning as brand big tops providing aesthetic ovestimulation. The Pleat Mirror Panels by AfroditiKrassa, part of a new catwalk inspired line, is just one of many new pieces.

Courtesy of 
AfroditiKrassa
9 / 10
Ilse Crawford portrait

A Place Called Home in Trafalgar Square (September 18-22)

Anticipating the broaders shifts in definitions of public and private space, Airbnb commissioned four designers, including Jasper Morrison and Ilse Crawford (pictured), to create their idealized visions of home in Trafalgar Square, playing off the site's ability to provide users with a new look at stylish dwellings.  

Courtesy of 
Leslie Williamson
10 / 10
Pencil Sharpener for Norman Foster for exhibition of industrial design at Victoria Albert Museum

The Wish List at the Victoria and Albert Museum (September 13-21)

Consider it a fringe benefit of being part of the design cognoscenti. This quirky group exhibition, sponsored by Benchmark and the American Hardwood Export Council, asked famous designers and architects such as Zaha Hadid and Paul Smith to put in a request for a personal object, which would then be created by an up-and-comer. The spherical pencil sharpener, above, is Norie Matsumoto's attempt to spruce up Norman Foster's workspace.

 

A congress of design covering a constellation of neighborhoods across England's capital, the London Design Festival functions as an umbrella for trade shows, installations, showcases, and innumerable product launches. The variety is dizzying, and not only at group shows such as 100% Design, Tent, and designjunction. From exhibitions of Polish graphic art and bespoke wallpaper to Jon Daniel's discussion of under-recognized designers from the African diaspora,  its easy to be overwhelmed. We highlighted some of the events and exhibitions we're excited to check out.

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