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Dutch Intervertuals in London for Dutch Stuff
22nd September 2017

Highlights: London Design Fair

This year was a big year for London Design Fair. Not only did September 2017 mark its biggest show to date, but it also saw the arrival of brand new country pavilions. For the first time ever both the Netherlands and the US had dedicated shows at the fair. London Design Fair also launched numerous new initiatives and, more than likely as a result, will report record visitor numbers next week!

Dutch Stuff

As the name suggests, Dutch Stuff was a deliberately eclectic and multidisciplinary exhibition that encompassed furniture, lighting, textiles, jewellery, ceramics as well as category-defying sculptural objects. The sprawling show, which took place against the industrial backdrop of the Old Truman Brewery’s 6,000sqm top-floor space, brought together over 65 studios, collectives, labels and independent makers all hailing from the Netherlands. Its presence at the fair was a big moment for London Design Fair founder Jimmy MacDonald who lobbied for three years to get Dutch design represented at the show.

Form&Seek in the pavilion, Dutch Stuff

Assembly

Also new to the fair was a US pavilion. Assembly marked London Design Fair’s second ever Guest Country Pavilion and brought together the work of 13 designers and studios connected to America. The show was curated by Jill Singer and Monica Khemsurov, founders of online design magazine Sight Unseen (and its pop-up design fair offshoot Sight Unseen OFFSITE in New York), and marked the duo’s first international exhibition. The curation of the exhibition was not lead by a common theme, material or typology, but rather a shared desire to push the boundaries of creative possibility. As a result, the objects on display were wildly diverse ranging from Steven Haulenbeek’s other-worldly vessels made with resin-bonded sand, to Christopher Stuart’s furniture series in which the designer used CAD to digitally drape fabric over basic furniture forms.

Slash Objects within the US Pavilion, Assembly

Material of the Year

London Design Fair 2017 also marked the inauguration of its Material of the Year installation, a showcase that spotlights the most interesting and boundary-pushing materials and processes currently at play in the design world. This year the focus was on Jesmonite. A lightweight acrylic-modified gypsum composite, Jesmonite is unique in its versatility – it sets quickly, requires no kiln and is non-toxic so you can experiment with it freely. Designer Ariane Prin has been working with the material for more than four years and for London Design Fair 2017 created a site-specific installation formed out of the material. Rustiles comprised a series of tiles formed from Ariane’s unique mix of Jesmonite AC100 and metal dust salvaged from key cutters and inspired by the classic dimensions of the London brick.

Ariane Prin's tiles for Material of the Year, Jesmonite
Want to know more about London Design Fair? Read Zetteler’s interview with the event’s founder Jimmy MacDonald here.

If you would like to receive installed photography from the London Design Fair exhibitions please contact dorothy@zetteler.co.uk.
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