MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan - Courtesy of London Design Festival.

Four temporary gardens. MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan – Courtesy of London Design Festival.

London Design Festival 2016 – Big cities long for detoxing spaces to soothe a hectic lifestyle, tarmac and pollution. We picked four temporary gardens at London Design Festival that respond to distressing needs of Her Majesty’s fellow citizens.


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MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan - Courtesy of London Design Festival.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan – Courtesy of London Design Festival.

London based architect Asif Khan created a temporary pavilion exploring solutions to urban living for the brand’s MINI LIVING project. “London people overlap. In Shoreditch you have busy start uppers, Friday night party-people, residents and passersby. They cross streets stressfully not helping each other” said Asif Khan at the press preview.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan - Courtesy of London Design Festival.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan – Courtesy of London Design Festival.

Three ‘forest-bathing’ spaces are filled with plants are inserted into Shoreditch’s busy city streets. Located on the junction of Old Street and Pitfield Street, Asif Khan’s design set aims to offer “a space that can be used by all. And become a place to connect, create and relax”.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan - Courtesy of London Design Festival.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan – Courtesy of London Design Festival.

The structures, each with a different configuration, provide space for different types of activity. Visitors are invited to take a moment to relax amid thousands of saplings and are encouraged to take away plant cuttings to nurture and grow in their own homes.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan - Courtesy of London Design Festival.

MINI LIVING Forests by Asif Khan – Courtesy of London Design Festival.

French designer Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance created a relaxing room called L’Eden for champagne brand Perrier Jouët at 147 Wardour Street, W1F 8WD. The installation features also the world’s first bio-responsive garden by Bompas & Parr. “The project offers an immersive experience around a new vision of nature, creating a place to relax in contrast to the urban streets of Soho” says Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance.

L'Eden by Perrier Jouët Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance.

L’Eden by Perrier Jouët – Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance.

The installation features a vertical system of 3D-printed elements suspended from the ceiling on a network of brass tubes which grow down from the ceiling, like branches from a pergola.

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In the basement, Bombpass & Parr crerated the world’s first bio-responsive garden. Thanks to a variety of micro-electronic sensors and delicate exo-skeletons, plants and trees physically move in response to visitors very presence and body movements. The plants’ own bio-electrical output is used to generate an intriguing and evolving soundscape that also reflects guests’ interactions.

We’ve given new meaning to the term ‘living wall’, which has become anodyne in architectural terms, and are able to showcase an interesting new direction for integrating plants and organic forms in our lives in more interactive ways.” Say Sam Bompas and Harry Parr.

L'Eden by Perrier Jouët Bompass & Parr.

L’Eden by Perrier Jouët – Bompass & Parr.

Speak low if you speak love. Wrote Shakespeare in Much Ado About Nothing. On the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, London Globe Theater created a special secret garden installation in the atrium of citizenM’s Bankside hotel.

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A tumbling cascade of letters, created out of white and mirrored acrylic. Hanging over the space are also larger individual letters, suspended from wires to spell out the quote. Other sayings from Shakespeare, relating to the idea of secrets and deception, also hang from the trees in the courtyard.