In over 12 years the London Design Festival, held this year from September 13 to September 21, has grown to become one of the city’s calendar events, visited by an estimated 350,000 people and acting as an umbrella for projects by over 250 collaborators, from retailers and manufacturers to galleries and colleges.
Its hub was the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A), where many of the Festival’s commissioned pieces are temporarily installed. Here, explains Festival director Ben Evans, “We try to say something different about design.” With no requirement to make objects that were saleable or conventionally functional, designers were free to focus on ideas.
Other centers of gravity were the independent design fairs and showcases that took place during the same week: 100% Design, Decorex, Designjunction, Tent London, and others. Smaller fry included multifarious pop-ups, take-overs, and make-overs, open studios and workshops, high-minded seminars, and innumerable launches and lunches. Among a profusion of great work—some of which is still on view—the following projects stood out. Click on the photo above to view a slide show.