Celebration of design returns to London with Clerkenwell Design Week's 11th edition

Clerkenwell Design Week came back after a gap of two years with its talks programme, exhibitions, installation and events hosted by various designers and creatives across the world.

by STIRworldPublished on : Jun 30, 2022

Clerkenwell Design Week came back after two years, with its 11th edition, to celebrate design in one of the most creative districts of the city of London. Spanning across a period of three days, from May 24-26, 2022, the event welcomed various design brands to showcase their vision and ideas through their designs and saw a participation of more than 140 resident showrooms opening their doors to new audiences. As UK’s leading independent design event, Clerkenwell Design Week created an extensive yet creative festival for its visitors, which included hundreds of design-led fringe events, pop-ups, workshops, talks, and showroom presentations spread across 10 venues, three new for this year.

  • Clerkenwell Design Week 11th edition set across three days for 2022| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Clerkenwell Design Week 11th edition set across three days for 2022 Image: Courtesy of Clerkenwell Design Week
  • Installation by Interface, a vortex of yarn to showcase its history| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Installation by Interface, a vortex of yarn to showcase its history Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography
  • Interface installation creates a unique visual journey with its colorful yarns| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Interface installation creates a unique visual journey with its colorful yarns Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography

For the 2022 edition, the visitors at Clerkenwell Design Week were taken on a journey of awe and amazement with several installations set up by brands across the site. Danish brand HAY installed a piece of stylish outdoor furniture, named Palissade Park Dining Bench, within The Long Walk as a part of the Crypt on the Green. The event’s automotive sponsor, Porsche, created an interactive installation centered around their Taycan model. Interface, a global flooring brand, created a visual journey of its own history with a vortex of recycled econyl yarn showcasing how it went from a petroleum-led flooring manufacturer to now a climate-conscious brand. 

  • Lois O’Hara’s collaboration with OnOffice Magazine for exterior murals | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Lois O’Hara’s collaboration with OnOffice Magazine for exterior murals Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography
  • NVBL Architect’s Shelter representing architecture in its rawest and truest form| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    NVBL Architect’s Shelter representing architecture in its rawest and truest form Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography

The visitors at Clerkenwell Design Week found their way across the event space through another installation by multidisciplinary artist Lois O’Hara. O’Hara collaborated with OnOffice magazine to design exterior murals as a series titled OnOffice Create as well as worked with Duffy London to design a special swing table, that was revealed as an installation at the event. OnOffice also collaborated with Plant Designs, a biophilic design specialist for the project titled Plant.Nurture.Bloom. The immersive installation created a moment of serenity right in the middle of the city for its user to realise the importance of greenery within the urban working environments. NVBL Architects, with their installation Shelter, transformed Clerkenwell Close into a public square to encourage more social and cultural discussions among the visitors. Staying true to the basics of architecture, the structure of the Shelter does not permanently provide the site and resembles a primary form of what shelter actually means. This structure has only three elements: a biodegradable TPU roof, anchors to bolt it down, and off-cut stones. Another architecture firm that participated was BVN Architecture, which collaborated with Second Home to create WorkPOP. The key idea was to normalise the notion of working-from-anywhere. It is a one-of-a-kind experiment that allows everyone to experience work, discussion, collaboration, and entertainment beyond the traditional boundaries of work and place.

  • BAUX’s Ceiling launched within ‘BAUX Acoustic’ within the BAUX Lounge| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    BAUX’s Ceiling launched within ‘BAUX Acoustic’ within the BAUX Lounge Image: Courtesy of Clerkenwell Design Week
  • BAUX presenting at the Clerkenwell Design Week with its own unique space| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    BAUX presenting at the Clerkenwell Design Week with its own unique space Image: Mark Cocksedge

Another highlight was the global launch of BAUX’s first-ever ceiling product within BAUX Acoustic at the Old Sessions House. Apart from BAUX, another acoustical brand Texaa also presented two acoustic spaces and organised various events to make visitors understand the fundamental importance of acoustics in space through architecture.

  • AGO exhibiting its latest design at POP exhibition | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    AGO exhibiting its latest design at POP exhibition Image: Courtesy of Black Edge Production
  • British Collection exhibition showcasing the local designers at Clerkenwell Design Week 2022| Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    British Collection exhibition showcasing the local designers at Clerkenwell Design Week 2022 Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography

Spanning across 10 distinctive spaces in Clerkenwell, exhibitions were organised in both purpose-built and historic venues, all linked by a route through the centre of the district of EC1. With 10 exhibition spaces, including the three new venues introduced this year, each space took its own narrative with a different curatorial focus, ranging from international design to emerging talent, representing the best of British design. The previous 19th century prison venue showcased Light + Rising Star, an event hosting upcoming lighting designers with the international leading brands while POP gave the visitors a new immersive experience with the latest designs by AGO, Case Furniture, and Square in Circle Studio. Other previous year venues included Design Fields at Spa Fields exhibiting leading furniture designs and the British Collection at the Crypt of St James Church with new works by the local brands.

  • Conversations with British designer Tom Dixon at Clerkenwell Design Talks  | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Conversations with British designer Tom Dixon at Clerkenwell Design Talks Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography
  • Clerkenwell Talks with the conversations engages its audience in ideas and thoughts behind design | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    Clerkenwell Talks with the conversations engages its audience in ideas and thoughts behind design Image: Courtesy of Sam Frost Photography

With so many unique installations and exhibitions, Clerkenwell Design Week was filled with insightful talks and debates at the Clerkenwell Conversations curated by Katie Richardson. It was a series of daily talks that addressed the key issues across a broad range of topics through the thoughts and opinions of creatives, business leaders, and both established and emerging designers. The event saw various contributors such as Tom Dixon, Grimshaw Architects, Adam Nathaniel Furman, Joshua Mardell, and many other individual designers as well as brands.

  • 140+ showrooms open their doors to a new and larger audience | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    140+ showrooms open their doors to a new and larger audience Image: Courtesy of Clerkenwell Design Week
  • ReWork, a modular seating collection introduced by the brand Deadgood | Clerkenwell Design Week | STIRworld
    ReWork, a modular seating collection introduced by the brand Deadgood Image: Courtesy of Clerkenwell Design Week

Another integral part of the Clerkenwell Design Week 2022 was the local resident design showrooms. In over 12 years since its inception in 2010, it has seen a tremendous rise in the number of participants from the initial 40 to this year’s over 140+ showrooms. Fritz Hansen celebrated their 150th anniversary with a special preview of its products, while Deadgood introduced new launches including ReWork, a modular seating collection. All showrooms, from the brands like Arper, and Gensler to Vitra and Kettal, used their designs and products exhibition to not only represent their brand core values and design thinking but also focused on a running theme of sustainability.

Clerkenwell Design Week was made possible with the enthusiasm of its creatives and audience | STIRworld
Clerkenwell Design Week was made possible with the enthusiasm of its creatives and audience Image: Courtesy of Black Edge Production

Clerkenwell Design Week returned this year with a blast and equipped with its own pink cocktails. Greater and larger than ever, the iconic pink trail was lit with extraordinary enthusiasm and excitement among the creatives and their audiences, who made Clerkenwell Design Week of 2022 possible and unforgettable.

(Text by Rashi Karkoon, intern at STIRworld)

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