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It’s been a week since we made our annual inspiration pilgrimage to Clerkenwell Design Week, and being Thursday, thought we’d do a nice little #TBT to #CDW.
CDW showcases the best in the design business. With more businesses and architects per sq/m in comparison to other design events, it’s one of the largest (and leading) in the world. It exhibits over 300 brands to an international audience (73 countries to be precise). Last year, it generated 34,128 visitors, with companies such as Mulberry, Jaguar, Liberty, Warner Bros, Land Rover and IBM attending; makes it a pretty big deal if you ask me.
Housing quite a few exhibitions, it would be a little difficult to talk about every one. So here are some quick highlights:
One of the main displays that really shone (sorry) was the Light exhibition. New for 2018, it was held in the ever-popular Fabric nightclub. Companies such as Wever & Ducré and Calex had absolutely stunning designs on show, with one in particular creating amazing shadows when lit up. It was really interesting to see how different designers can interpret lighting; from mid-century to Bohemian, the exhibition showed how creative you can be with just a lightbulb and a handful of materials. The only real downside was the lack of variety within Fabric; unlike previous years, it was solely devoted to lights and didn’t quite have the same diversity of unique design pieces.
Another noteworthy highlight - Your Tote Counts. Designed by Chelsea College of Art students, these revamped bags emphasised environmental issues (surprisingly) caused by cotton tote bags, with all proceeds going to charity; visitors could revive their old tote bags guilt-free.
Promoting both seasoned and up-and-coming designers, Clerkenwell’s Next Generation Design Pavilion gave us an introduction to future talent, this year showcasing work from GCSE students in and around London. Intertwining these budding creators and CDW’s recurring theme of sustainability, the design piece emphasised the past, present and future as one and the unchanging presence of our natural surroundings.
(We never got a picture of the piece, so here’s one from CDW’s website)
For those wanting to meet their heroes, CDW also hosted Conversations at Clerkenwell; you could attend talks from prestigious designers and influencers within the industry, such as Carolina Calzada-Oliveira, Patrizia Moroso and duo Timorous Beasties, and get that bit of inspiration you were after for ages from your favourite creators.
The Design exhibition emphasised the more glamorous side to design, filled with luxurious materials and intricate finishing touches. The Arte wallcoverings and Casa Botelho’s furniture really stood out; it showed that design doesn’t have to be confined to a particular group of people, but can be suitable for everyone’s tastes. It’s pretty universal.
Overall, CDW 2018 did what it does best - celebrate design.
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