As spring unfurls its leaves and flowers appear, beautiful sprouts of new design growth will also be at London Design Week, through the presence of ten inspiring designer-makers from the Design-Nation portfolio. In the stylish interior of Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, Design-Nation will show flooring, tiles, lighting, furniture, textiles and decorative vessels, sensitively designed, expertly hand-crafted or made in partnership with the best independent mills.
Four of the exhibiting designers are quite new to the portfolio, and great examples of the outstanding talent to be found today in the UK contemporary craft and design world. Manchester-based furniture maker Aidan Donovan makes thoughtful pieces with simple shapes and clean lines, and a great understanding of the native timbers he selects. By contrast Porter + Trundle in London delight in applying clever colours in lively and changing combination to the graphic forms of their furniture. Ceramicist Gaby Guz brings her mastery of the centuries old raku-firing process to her contemporary vessels, imbuing them with a sense of history and individuality. The striking textiles of Beatrice Larkin add character to interiors, monochromatic explorations of pattern and repetition, beautifully woven as throws and cushions. Both Gaby and Beatrice are also London-based.
New work for London Design Week from the south and east includes stunning rug design by renowned textile designer and artist Margo Selby (Kent); delicate bud-holders in pewter, silver and eco-resin by Amy Leigh (Suffolk); and the ever-evolving hand-decorated tile landscapes of Caroline Egleston (Hampshire) who brings a painterly eye to her compositions in colour and marks.
A quirky take on lighting is demonstrated in Blott Works’ pieces, which cleverly combine Lancashire-based designer Dan Morrison’s engineering approach with great appreciation of form and materials. A little further south in Staffordshire Sally Burnett produces embellished wood-turned vessels which are real statements, each one subtly different as she responds to the differing and beautiful character of wood grains in each hand-selected block of wood. Suspended over everything is the unique architectural origami of Fung + Bedford, experts in the pleated form and in creating calming and intriguing interiors from their rural base in Sussex.
Design-Nation director Clare Edwards says ‘We are proud to champion the best of UK-based independent design today from across the country, creating opportunities for both emerging and established maker-led brands to reach new markets and to continue to develop creatively. Design-Nation at London Design Week is an impressive contemporary showcase of objects to grace any interior.”