London calling: design week is back

From 14 to 22 September, the London Design Festival brings a week of international creativity to the city. Here are some previews

London Design Festival
London Design Festival

From 14 to 22 September, the London Design Festival returns, now at its 17th iteration, enlivening the city with presentations, exhibitions and workshops. Equipped with walking shoes and a map, visitors must not miss the following events.

Bamboo (竹) Ring: Weaving into Lightness by Kengo Kuma
Bamboo (竹) Ring: Weaving into Lightness

Let’s start with the new developments, like the installations and encounters organized at the Victoria & Albert Museum, a long-term partner of LDF: in the garden, Japanese architect Kengo Kuma aims to amaze with Bamboo () Ring: Weaving into Lightness, a mega-structure with a nest-like form, light and strong, made by weaving bamboo and carbon fiber.

The museum also presents the results of Legacy: the project urged by Sir John Sorrell, chairman of the London Design Festival, calls for the participation of 10 designers matched with 10 personalities from the world of design – such as Jasper Morrison with Tristram Hunt, director of the V&A – for the creation of sustainable works in American red oak. Also at the V&A, the Global Design Forum (from 14 to 22 September) offers a series of encounters with creative talents and innovators like Yves Behar and Vivienne Westwood.

Disco Carbonara
Disco Carbonara by Martino Gamper

Heading to King’s Cross, the vibrant new design district that now joins the other nine, the new shopping zone of Coal Drops Yard welcomes a site-specific installation titled Disco Carbonara by Martino Gamper, a playful structure – 10 meters long, 8 meters high – with a colorful facade, like the entrance to a disco, made with scrap for the processing of wood by ALPI.
Another playful project is by Camilla Walala, famous for her hyper-colorful graphic effects: the designer returns this year to transform South Molton Street, in the West End, into an outdoor salon with off-scale benches, an invitation to sit on a jubilee of geometric patterns and chromatic effects. Design week also reaches the heart of the metropolis, at Westminster Cathedral, with a black&white labyrinth created by Patternity, featuring graphic squares in a tribute to the church that is a symbol of London.

Other events not to be missed include the Design Destinations, the tradeshows like 100%Design, designjunction, Focus/19 and London Design Fair, where you can discover new products, meet leading architects and get to know emerging talents and independent brands. For lovers of Italian style and design, from 19 to 22 September there is I-Made (Italian Manufacture, Art and Design Exhibition), the project coordinated by Giulio Cappellini in the spaces of the Saatchi Gallery in Chelsea to bring together excellent exponents of Italian production.

Porro, Piero Lissoni
Metallico by Piero Lissoni, Porro

Italian design culture runs rampant in the streets as well: Foscarini grabs attention with the dreamy itinerary of Meta-Physica at OneRoom Gallery; DePadova outfits its showroom on Draycott Avenue to present the reissue of pieces by Paolo Tilche, Paul McCobb and Jens Risom, together with new products by Piero Lissoni and the duo GamFratesi; Poltrona Frau invites you to meet the new Connecting Experiences collection in the store on Fulham Road; and Lema, in the King’s Road store, catches the eye of even the most distracted passers-by with the kaleidoscopic window displays of David Lopez Quincoces.