Clerkenwell, once the centre of printing, distilling and brewing, and with a rich history in clock making, watches and jewellery, has seen its buildings transformed into studios, workshops, showrooms and architect and interior design practices. Retaining its creative flair, Clerkenwell is known as being one of the most important design hubs in the world. In fact, Clerkenwell is home to more creative businesses and architects per square mile than anywhere else on the planet. In the last two decades, the transformation of the area has seen design greats such as Vitra, USM, Bulthaup and Arper all move in.
From the 23-25 May Clerkenwell took centre stage once again for the annual Clerkenwell Design Week, an event attended last year by over 34,000 people from 72 different countries (they haven't released this year's figures yet). This year alongside the usual exhibition spaces, there was over 80+ showrooms opening their doors and 300 events running across the three days.
With so much to see we cherry-picked some of our fav (including some of our clients!) ‘not to be missed’ showrooms, installations and exhibitions.
Goswell Road was a hive of activity throughout the week. At 132 Goswell Road, a former printing press and brewery, Brintons, British carpet manufacturers and contemporary artist and filmmaker Shezad Dawood partnered to create a triptych of carpets featuring visual motifs and themes from Dawood’s archive of work. Each artwork used layers of imagery and bold colours, which Brintons reproduced onto carpets using their 32-colour High Definition Weave – an innovation in carpet weaving, unique to Brintons, that allows for infinite design possibilities.
Further down the road at 101 Goswell Road, iconic Italian design brand, Alessi, partnered with the Zaha Hadid Gallery to present an exploration of the worlds of architecture and design through the collaboration between both brands. There was an installation featuring designs, limited edition works and prototypes that show the evolution of Hadid’s collaborations with Alessi from the 2003 Tea & Coffee Towers project to the Forma Grater from the SS17 collection.
Just around the corner on Berry Street, BD Barcelona launched a book celebrating their history. They also unveiled a series of new designs and Marcus Fairs, Founder and Editor in Chief of Dezeen was in conversation with Barcelona based artist and designer, Cristian Zuzunaga.
At Brewhouse Yard, floral subscription service, bloomon, installed an Urban Meadow, featuring yellow and white flowers, including; Solidago, Yarrow, Lisianthus, Chrysanthemum, Gladioli and Mimosa. The installation included 10,000 (!) stems to create a meadow seemingly growing from the concrete streets of London.
The Order of St John once again hosted the Detail exhibition. Dedar, who attended for the first time in 2016, returned to showcase a collection that explored the relationship between visual expression and textile art, with fabrics produced on a jacquard loom. The collection brings together irregular yarns in bright saturated colours, combined with gold and silver inserts, creating lavish weaves that express creative experimentation. Dedar also introduced a new range of bold patterned fabrics including Fresco, Geometric Pic Nic and Pachisi alongside fire retardant textiles dedicated to the hospitality sector.
Both Ercol and Anglepoise took up residence in new local restaurant, Albion Clerkenwell. Ercol showed their new Lara & Luca collection, while Anglepoise created an installation featuring their new collaboration with Paul Smith. It’s the third edition of the Type 75 Desk Lamp which features a striking primary colour palette, taking inspiration from Dutch painter Mondrian’s De Stijl of art and launches to coincide with the run up to next year’s De Stigl centennial.