London Design Festival 2020, graphic design by Studio Pentagram - Courtest of LDF.

London Design Festival 2020, graphic design by Studio Pentagram – Courtesy of LDF.

London Design Festival 2020 – The 18th edition of the city’s celebration of design has opened its physical and digital doors. In the wake of the pandemic, organisers opted to mostly focus on “the brilliance of the London design scene and the design community’s commitment to the recovery of the city,” said Sir John Sorrell, chairman of the London Design Festival. We have selected 6 brilliant installations and design happenings on show both off and on-line.

  • RELATED STORIES: 6 Covid-19 related design exhibitions and projects on show at London Design Festival 2020.

Studio Weave’s greenhouse

HOTHOUSE by Studio Swine @ London Design Festival 2020 - Courtesy of LDF.

Courtesy of LDF.

Located at International Quarter London (IQL), London-based architecture practice Studio Weave has created a Victorian glasshouse-inspired large-scale installation bearing a warning message. The conservatory provides a controlled habitat for cultivating plants that would not ordinarily grow within the UK’s climate such as guava, mango, pineapple and quinoa. Back in 1930’s the neighbourhood was historically once dominated by a 20-mile stretch of greenhouses. Today, scientists predict that if the current rate of climate change continues to accelerate, all of these crops could potentially be grown outside in the UK by 2050. The supported was supported by developers Lendlease and London Continental Railways.

UNITY by Marlene Huissoud

UNITY by Marlene Huissoud in Coal Drops Yard, King's Cross - Courtesy of London Design Festival 2020.

Courtesy of LDF.

At Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross, French designer Marlene Huissoud has created the UNITY installation which “emphasises the notion of unity and the importance of working together to repurpose and reconsider our shared environments as we emerge from the pandemic”. Visitors are invited to stand around the piece forming a circle two metres apart. Thanks to foot pumps they can breathe life into the piece collaboratively. If no one is pumping, the installation will deflate and lose its power and vitality.

OCTAGON by Tom Dixon

OCATGON Tom Dixon at LDF2020 - Photo via IG by @towmdixonstudio

Photo via IG by @towmdixonstudio

Tom Dixon presents the OCTAGON installation representing the multifaceted and constantly evolving nature of its brand. The Coal Office will be transformed into 8 different architectural spaces and each area will be defined by this year’s hero collections. A Pop-up bar, 2 Lounges, a Disco, a Perfumery Lab, a MASS Gallery, a Pattern Masterclass Exhibition and an S-chair ‘Museum’ will be on display. On show, the a kinetic installation of our new SPRING Silver pendants.

ADORNO virtual international exhibition

Iceland virtual exhibition by ADORNO gallery - Image by ADORNO.

Iceland virtual exhibition – Image by ADORNO gallery.

Under the theme of ‘the new reality’, ADORNO gallery presents a virtual exhibition showcasing 14 country-specific environments with over 200 exclusive pieces. Curators from 14 participating countries have been asked to reflect on specific experiences, thoughts, and themes from the time of lockdown. Teming up with local designers at the intersection of craft and design they developed sub-narratives to the overarching theme, including gender, urbanization, climate, isolation, and healing, among others. The country on show at the virtual exhibition are: Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands.


Biophilic design expert Oliver Heath will lead the 'Planted Unplugged' talks - Image: courtesy of LDF.

Biophilic design expert Oliver Heath will lead the ‘Planted Unplugged’ talks – Image: courtesy of LDF.

Exploring how design, sustainability, architecture and nature can combine to create cleaner, greener, healthier urban spaces, the PLANTED pygital show comprises a virtual programme of talks on biophylic innovation cross-pollinating food production, architecture, nature and design. A physical exhibition features the best sustainable design products by Another Country, Vestre, Benchmark, Biotecture, Natural Mat and Bramley and more.


MSCTY EXPO - Courtesy of LDF.

MSCTY EXPO – Courtesy of LDF.

Nick Luscombe, BBC Radio 3 presenter director of the site-specific sound/arts practice Musicity teamed up with London writer & curator Clare Farrow to curate the first edition of MSCTY EXPO, an exciting new digital meeting-space for architecture & sound art, responding to some of the global issues of our time. The project features 7 new collaborations between dynamic sound artists and leading architects such as Richard Rogers, Daniel Libeskind and Nieto Sobejano Arquitectos.

Architecture for Dogs

Architecture for Dogs - Courtesy of LDF.

Courtesy of LDF.

Featuring a collection of architectural designs for dogs by world-class architects and designers, the internationally acclaimed Architecture for Dogs makes its European debut at Japan House London. On show works by Shigeru Ban, Kengo Kuma, Toyō Itō, Sou Fujimoto, Atelier Bow-Wow and MA Yang Song amongst others. Each project offers a light-hearted and insightful exploration into architecture and design that can be joyful for both dogs and their human companions.

London Design Festival 2020, graphic design by Studio Pentagram - Courtest of LDF.

London Design Festival 2020, graphic design by Studio Pentagram – Courtest of LDF.