This month, alongside 18 other cities, London committed to the Net Zero Carbon Buildings Declaration: pledging to a near future of net-zero carbon emissions. Thinking on both micro and macro scales, this year’s London Design Festival addresses sustainability in unconventional ways. A few of the festival’s installations open a world of possibilities for the gauche material plastic, while others are offering a plastic water bottle alternative. From mud-spraying drones and vibrant vessels to textured tables made from pigmented polyurethane foam dust and energy efficient lighting, we spotlight the boldest design innovations that will make their debut at 2018 London Design Festival.
PlasticScene at Gasholders
At Gasholders in Kings Cross, the iron gasholders recently turned luxury flats will play host to an exhibition of new design objects co-curated by Modern Design Review and furniture designer James Shaw. PlasticScene features the work of an international roster of designers including Dirk van Der Kooij, Studio ilio, and Thing Thing, among others. An essential stop on your London Design Festival itinerary, the collection reveals some inventive and unconventional approaches to reclaiming plastic waste that prove the material has far more to offer than is often expected.
17-23 September; Gasholders 10, Retail Unit 1, 1 Lewis Cubitt Square, London N1C 4BY
Mud Shell by Stephanie Chaltiel at Design Junction
This year’s Designjunction is given an urgent twist with Mud Shell, a housing project developed by architect Stephanie Chaltiel that merges earth architecture with drone technology. On the Riverside Walkway, Chaltiel has joined forces with students from the Architectural Association in London to produce one of her mud shells, an inhabitable structure comprised of a prefabricated light formwork that is coated in several layers of natural materials by drone spraying technology to become a sturdy and permanent structure. Due to its fast construction time and minimal labor requirements, Mud Shell has the potential to serve in emergency housing situations such as refugee camps, says Chaltiel.
20-23 September; Oxo, Doon Street, Riverside Walkway, South Bank, London, SE1
Material of the Year showcase at London Design Fair
For its second Material of the Year showcase, London Design Fair in East London has selected the infamous yet ubiquitous plastic, prompting a reconsideration of our approach to this much-maligned material. The exhibition features the work of four designers going ‘beyond the chipper’ in their use of plastic as a unique material. In particular, the elegant marble-effect surfaces of Weez & Merl’s table and lighting collection made from waste plastics sourced in Brighton & Hove, and the engineered beauty of Charlotte Kidger’s brightly coloured pots and vases, constructed from pigmented polyurethane foam dust (pictured), both give plastic new lease on life.
20-23 September; Old Truman Brewery; 91 Brick Ln, London E1 6QR