2019_09_16_T+T18186

Our 35 Favorite Finds at the 2019 London Design Festival

We combed through images from dozens of exhibitions and launches to ferret out the works we were most excited about from this year's London Design Festival, from rainbow tables to iconic reissues to lots and lots (and lots) of wavy furniture. Check out all of our picks after the jump.
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For LDF, 20 Designers Made Masks Representing How They See Themselves, And the Results Are Hilarious

Having been invited to curate an LDF exhibition for SEEDS gallery on the theme of Nature/Nurture, the design studio M-L-XL decided to focus on human nature, and one of its darkest facets in particular — the masks we put on in order to present an idealized version of ourselves to the world, especially in the image-obsessed age of social media. The resulting show, however, is one of the wittiest, most playful LDF presentations we've seen in awhile, with 20 designers representing their identities through handmade masks ranging from the beautiful to the hilariously grotesque.
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Fort Makers Opens an Yves Klein–Inspired Shop on the Lower East Side

In keeping with the recent theme of New York designers opening their own showrooms and shops, Fort Makers this week opened its own permanent space at 38 Orchard on the Lower East Side, just down the street from Coming Soon. The space will transform every six to eight weeks with an installation curated by Fort Makers creative director Nana Spears; its first iteration takes inspiration from Yves Klein in an installation called The Blue Room.
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female italian designer The Ladies Room

These Four Women Are Leading Milan’s Design Scene — Both Together and Apart

This July, a design show in a Parisian apartment harnessed the talents of what feels like at least half of Milan’s up-and-coming design scene. Called "You Are Welcome" by The Ladies' Room collective — a collaborative project made up of Agustina Bottoni, Ilaria Bianchi, Sara Ricciardi, and Astrid Luglio — the show took the form of an intimate, female-centered salon, where objects vibrated with their own peculiar presences. All brilliant designers in their own right, the four have been working together since 2016 when they met at the Turin-based design fair Operae.
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#365vases

This Norwegian Designer is Making a Vase Every Day for 365 Days

We've known artists who have committed to making a drawing a day, or graphic designers who have created a digital poster each night when they return home from their day job. But never had we seen a designer take on the task of making a three-dimensional object — much less one that needs to be glazed, fired, photographed, and Instagrammed — for each day of the year, until we were browsing the account of Ann Kristin Einarsen earlier this spring. Her #365vases project — in which she designs a vase a day with a new set of parameters each month — is next level.
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Meet the New Mumbai-Based Studio Making Lamps Inspired by Ancient Culture

The work of the new lighting design studio 500 B.C. comes from a fairly unexpected place, in more ways than one — not only is the firm based in Mumbai, India, but founders Anandita Shah and Shiraz Noorani both have backgrounds in disciplines other than product design. Before creating their very first lamp together a year ago, Shah ran a handbag company for 15 years, while Noorani was a civil and structural engineer. Since pivoting, they've been churning out lamp after lamp under the influence of icons like Luis Barragan, Alvar Aalto, and Ettore Sotsass.
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This Canadian Designer — Known for His Woodwork — Is Making the Most Epic Glass

When we posted our New York Design Week round-ups earlier this spring, there was one project we held for later because it was just. that. gorgeous. Amidst a sea of walnut, bronze, maple, and steel at Vancouver-based designer Jeff Martin's booth, we spied these craggy, colorful glass vessels, glinting under the lights of the Javits. Turns out, when we reached out to Martin for more information, that the process by which they're made — from the remnants of past projects — is as interesting as the way they look.
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The Latest Collection by Rooms Evokes Neoclassical Furniture, Primitivism, and Arabian Folk Tales

Back in 2008, when we featured the first collection by the newly launched Tbilisi studio Rooms in our previous magazine, I.D., our excitement admittedly had to do partly with the discovery of high-level work coming out of a relatively unlikely place — work that blended in seamlessly with international design trends. But by 2016, when the designers left that comfort zone and began channeling inspirations that were closer to home, it became clear (ironically enough) that their success no longer owed any debt to the exotic appeal of their locale. The duo’s newest line feels like the next step in their evolution.
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Six More Things We Loved at This Year’s Design Miami/Basel

The buzziest thing about this week's Design Miami/Basel show might have been the controversy over Virgil Abloh's collaboration with Vitra, but there were a few other major standouts we saw, such as Floris Wubben's increasingly complex and ambitious experiments with extrusion for The Future Perfect, stylist Connie Hüsser's curated object menagerie, and Franco-Danish duo OrtaMiklos's collection of blobby furniture inspired by Roman decadence. See all six projects we liked, after the jump.
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Philippe Malouin on How He Created What Just Might Be Basel’s Most Unusual Collection Ever

Every year, it seems like the contemporary work exhibited at the premiere design fairs gets more intricate and labor-intensive, more whimsical and wacky, more conceptual and process-driven. At this week's Design Miami Basel show, however, Salon 94 Design is departing from that convention in an epic way, with a presentation called Industrial Office that draws on basic ideas and questions from Philippe Malouin's work on commercial office furniture, but pushed to extremes in terms of materials, engineering, and fabrication. We spoke with Malouin to find out more.
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