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Material Matters’ primary edition to host design-led discourses during LDF 2022

Material Matters’ primary edition to host design-led discourses during LDF 2022

The interesting assortment of panel discussions and talks will include the likes of Grant Gibson, Bethan Laura Wood, Nigel Coates, Adam Nathaniel Furman, Michael Marriott, Naomi Cleaver and Bejamin Hubert among others.

by Ayushi Mathur
Published on : Sep 14, 2022

London Design Festival 2022, is all set to return for its 20th edition. Marking a major lineup of installations, exhibitions, and design launches, the event director Ben Evans CBE will celebrate multidisciplinary design practices while promoting the exemplary design scene of the United Kingdom to a global audience. This edition of LDF 2022 also marks the inaugural edition of Material Matters, a design event based on the critically acclaimed podcast by Grant Gibson. Grant Gibson is a prolific design writer and host who partnered with William Knight, to organise Material Matters 2022. The design event will be an expansive display of sustainable design, upcycled design and products by global studios, immersive installations, and an exciting material market. It will take place at the Oxo Tower Wharf as part of the Bankside Design District of LDF 2022.

Bolon Flooring Wing
Bolon Flooring Wing Image: Courtesy of Bolon

Interlacing all of the aforementioned with discussions on design with industry leaders, designers and architects, Material Matters will also host an eclectic programme of talks from September 21, 2022, till September 25, 2022. "There’s plenty about materials here, of course, with people discussing everything from recycled products in aluminium to stone, via plastic, cross-laminated timber, waste and even eggshells. But a panoply of other issues are covered too, such as neurodiversity, the relationship between craft, architecture and design, not to forget the importance of repair and reuse," says Gibson, on the ideation of the anticipated discourses.

Inside Norway’s ‘Ecosystems of Design’

Emerald Stone worktop by Lundhs
Emerald Stone worktop by Lundhs Image: Courtesy of Lundhs

Kicking off on the design fair's preview night, Gibson will chair a conversation with Pål Eid-Hviding, marketing manager, Fora Form; Hilde H Kallevig, vice president of brand and marketing, Norsk Hydro; Thor-Anders Lundh Håkestad, CEO, Lundhs and Marius Myking, director of product design, Snøhetta. As a thought-provoking discussion on Nordic design, aesthetics and projects, the talk programme will accentuate a dialogue on the Norwegian design practices while addressing the relationship between the United Kingdom and Norway post Brexit. In the midst of the climate crisis, the conversations will also focus on Norwegian designers and manufacturers' means of alleviating environmental disruption.

Life in Plastic

Emily Skinner (left) and the Smile Plastics Bureau at Design District London
Emily Skinner (left) and the Smile Plastics Bureau at Design District London Image: Courtesy of Smile Plastics
Riya Patel (left) and Håkan Nordin (right)
Riya Patel (left) and Håkan Nordin (right) Image: Courtesy of Material Matters 2022

Plastic was initially established as the material of great fame, glamour, and convenience followed by expansive defamation and disastrous association with the climate crisis. But transcribing the cost of plastic’s omnipresence in everyday lives, the interdependence that the world now holds upon it alongside the impact that it has on the environment, what price does it come within the design world? ‘Life in Plastic’ will voice the opinions of Vlasta Kubušová, co-founder, of Crafting Plastics! studio; Håkan Nordin, head of sustainability, Bolon; Emily Skinner, CEM and project manager, Smile Plastics. The discussion will be chaired by Riya Patel, a London-based writer and curator, and will establish an insight on how plastic has held a bad reputation for a long time but with a new generation of designers and manufacturers is also subject to the discovery of fresh creative potential.

Benjamin Hubert on the launch of his first monograph ‘Layer’

LAYER- Monograph for Phaidon
LAYER- Monograph for Phaidon Image: Courtesy of Layer

Benjamin Hubert's design agency, Layer design, will publish its first monograph in collaboration with Phaidon and written by Max Fraser, an iconic curator and commentator of design.

The monograph featuring six chronological chapters will trace Hubert’s journey in design through the years which has now shaped up as a leading design practice. The book titled ‘LAYER’ will be launched during the London Design Festival 2022. For the anticipated programme, Max Fraser sets the stage for Benjamin Hubert to share his insights and learnings on succeeding in the design industry with excerpts, nibs and cues from the book. “It was a challenging yet rewarding process producing the book, and looking back on our work has allowed us to consider the way we work now and in the future. It also gave us insights into how our work has evolved and is a testament to the talent of the team and our creative partners over the years,” says Hubert upon the conception of the monograph.

Benjamin Hubert
Benjamin Hubert Image: Courtesy of Material Matters 2022

As a candid and insightful look at the life and practice of the UK-based designer, the monograph is a splendid reflection of the business of design, Hubert’s career and also his collaborations with some of the leading brands including Bang & Olufsen, Airbus, Vitra, Braun, and Moroso. The monograph also features different products and projects by the company alongside its signature watercolour sketches.

The Negroni Talks

Adam Nathaniel Furman x Hiroyuki Onuki’s work
Adam Nathaniel Furman x Hiroyuki Onuki’s work Image: Courtesy of Kasama Potters
Liquid geology collection by CAN
Liquid geology collection by CAN Image: Courtesy of Felix Speller

Over the last few decades, many architects have chosen to diversify into new sectors of design, particularly furniture and product design. Surprisingly, many industrial designers are also dabbling in architectural and interior design. Material Matters collaborates with Negroni Talks, an irreverent discussion series held by architects at Fourth_Space and backed by Campari, to discover these overlapping layers of design methods.

Strange Fruits installation by Christopher Day
Strange Fruits installation by Christopher Day Image: Courtesy of Christopher Day

The architectural talks were born out of frustration with design mannerisms and aimed at capturing the spirit of the lively and opinions-driven discussions on everything design. For LDF 2022, Material Matters and Negroni Talks take up the first discussion at the Ombra Bar, East London, where they unpick architects’ obsession with designing chairs, featuring the likes of Adam Nathaniel Furman, Nigel Coates and Naomi Cleaver. This will be followed by the second programme, titled ‘Craft Work’ that will discuss architecture’s relationship with craft and will have contributions from Bill Amberg, curator and writer Corinne Julius, SoShiro’s Shiro Muchiri and Mat Barnes, director of London-based architecture practice CAN.

Dyslexia and Design

The Meisen desk
The Meisen desk Image: Courtesy of Material Matters 2022 and Emanuele Tortora
213 Min by ROKOS
213 Min by ROKOS Image: Courtesy of ROKOS

Can dyslexia be considered a reigning superpower? In an very unique discussion chaired by Piers Roberts, founder of Designersblock, the talk programme will be spearheaded by a swathe of leading figures in design and architecture who have previously been diagnosed with dyslexia. With a panel of speakers including Christopher Day, artist; Simone ten Hompel, artist and co-founder of Mixed Metals; Jim Rokos, founder of Rokos; and British designer Bethan Laura Wood, the programme will illuminate each designer's topical experiences on how dyslexia has affected their personal and professional lives. From Christopher’s life experiences, as a biracial man – influencing his works to Bethan channelling dyslexia to fuel her passionate and colourful creative output, the event will showcase how the learning disorder has allowed each of the panellists to perceive the world through a distinct lens.

Material Matters with Grant Gibson presents: Michael Marriott

Michael Marriot (left) and the Shichi by Michael Marriott for Ishinomaki Lab (right)
Michael Marriot (left) and the Shichi by Michael Marriott for Ishinomaki Lab (right) Image: Courtesy of Material Matters 2022

Gibson is set to bring forth the live version of his renowned podcast show, Material Matters, with a new edition featuring legendary designer Michael Marriott. Marriott has been a product designer in London since 1993. He was formerly educated as a furniture designer,that makes it the foundation of his practice. However, he has now ventured into other design disciplines, including set design for exhibitions, design installations, product design, and interior design. Gibson, in the live talk programme, will discuss the life and works of the British designer.

‘APeel’ by Alkesh Parmar and Anna Beel
‘APeel’ by Alkesh Parmar and Anna Beel Image: Courtesy of Studio ARP
‘Hydro’s chairs
Hydro’s chairs Image: Courtesy of Hydro

Along with the variety of talks and discussions, Material Matters will also host a workshop with Alkesh Parmar and Anna Beel, demonstrating the process of turning orange peel into paper, followed by 'Repair, Restore, and Recycle,' a talk hosted by URGE, the creative industries collective dedicated to systems change; 'Material Futures,' another exciting discussion on the material use and future of design; and an interactive training event named ‘Hydro Profile Academy’ which will explore the benefits of aluminium in design and manufacturing with the sponsored support of Hydro.

Material Matters will be held at the Oxo Tower, Wharf from September 22, 2022 till September 25, 2022 as part of the London Design Festival 2022.

Everything you need to know about London Design Festival 2022. Celebrating its 20th year, the festival takes over the city of London with installations, exhibitions, and talks from major design districts such as Brompton, Shoreditch Design Triangle, Greenwich Peninsula, Design London, Clerkenwell Design Trail, Park Royal, Mayfair, Bankside, King's Cross, William Morris Line, and Islington.

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