West Kensington Design District announces its first LDF programme

The inaugural West Kensington Design District is set to be the must-visit destination of London Design Festival 2018 with an exciting line-up including the newly opened Japan House, Design Museum, V&A Blythe House, 100% Design and more.

Returning for its 24th edition, 100% Design will take place from 19-22 September. With new features 100% Forward and 100% Futures, and an exciting roster of established and emerging brands the show promises to be an unmissable destination during the London Design Festival.

This year, as part of a refreshed programme the show welcomes Thomas Heatherwick and Marcel Wanders to the infamous Talks with 100% Design. Alongside an array of leading names and industry insiders, expect a series of inspiring sessions reflecting the very best in global design, emerging talents and the changing landscape of London’s creative communities.

Olympia London, home to 100% Design, is undergoing a major regeneration project, managed by owners Yoo Capital and Deutsche Finance International. Working with world-renowned design studio Heatherwick Studio and the award-winning SPPARC architects, the project will see the 130-year-old venue based on a 14 acre site in Kensington, London, transformed into a world-leading arts, entertainment, event and experiential district whilst staying true to its original heritage as an events business. At 100% Design, within the Upper Pillar Hall, Olympia London will host an historical exhibition of the iconic venue and showcase the vision for the next 130 years.

During the festival, Olympia will also be home to Design Best – a concept store offering discounts from our favourite design brands; from lamps to bags, homewares and fashion. In one of the traditional and exclusive reception rooms of Olympia, Enlightened Design III will present a lighting exhibition from Dutch curator David Heldt showcasing work from Dutch design studios, including Margaret van Bekkum, Marc de Groot, Jacqueline Harberink, Alex Groot Jebbink and Jesse Visser.

Home to the V&A’s study and research centre, Blythe House will run a series of tours during the festival. Visitors can book onto one of four tours from 19-21 September to experience the V&A’s Clothworkers’ Centre which holds one of the world’s most important collections of textiles and fashion; a chance to see the V&A’s vast archives including theatre costumes, model boxes and more than 14,000 pieces of furniture and objects from Britain, Europe and America, dating from the Middle Ages to the present day.

Opened in June this year, Japan House is the new cultural home of Japan in London. Presenting the very best of Japanese art, design, gastronomy, innovation, and technology, it deepens our appreciation of all that Japan has to offer. With a wide-ranging programme, Japan House celebrates Japan’s innovative, creative and technological merits, while shining a spotlight on the artisans, craftsmen, designers, performers, musicians and other professionals who are making waves both in Japan and around the world – from internationally renowned individuals, to emerging artists who are excelling in their field. For the London Design Festival, Japan House introduces BIOLOGY OF METAL: METAL CRAFTSMANSHIP IN TSUBAME SANJŌ, exploring the metal manufacturing tradition of Tsubame Sanjō in northern Japan. Visit Japan House for the exhibition, a range of talks, demonstrations and workshops between 6 September and 28 October 2018.

The Design Museum – recently voted European Museum of the Year – will open its doors to new exhibitions and a series of events throughout the festival. Exploring the notion of ‘Belonging’, Curator at Large Ammena M. McConnell will curate a series of events and has commissioned the museum’s atrium installation by London-based spatial laboratory Loop.ph. Visitors can also explore ‘Re-considering Canon’ an exhibition curated by Gallery FUMI and the MA in Curating Contemporary Design at Kingston School of Art, that explores ideas around selection and collecting within curation.

Located in a converted church in West Kensington, Arthill Gallery exhibits Asian and European Contemporary art by established as well as emerging artists. For London Design Festival, Arthill Gallery will present an exhibition presenting research and development of FiDU technology through the presentation of a series of design objects including the iconic PLOPP stool designed by Oskar Zieta and manufactured by his own founded factory.

Space Gap, a pavilion set in front of Olympia, aims to explore the disparity of space allocation in London through a programme of events over the course of the London Design Festival. Design and social issues from homelessness to ghost mansions are tackled through immersive installations, film screenings, performances, talks, debates and in the pavilion design itself.

All Things In Between is a group of designers working with a selection of unusual materials that have been developed for applicable and experiential purposes. For London Design Festival 2018 they will present their work in the new West Brompton Crossing shops on Lillie Road. Organised in the spirit of a Cabinet of Curiosity, this material oriented show will include leather-like biomaterial grown from coconut water, marbleized resin tiles from denim waste, woven fabrics inspired by CAD textures, ceramic paintings, and rock forms cast in dichroic glass.