Conran: Clerkenwell Design Week Part 1: Emma Booty reports

Clerkenwell Design Week came and went with the clement weather.

This year’s CDW was a merry hotchpotch of old buildings, contemporary and commercial art amid fickle shafts of sunlight and stroppy storm clouds.

The venues themselves reminded us how much as we might admire the individual pieces, none of these objects account for much until they’re in context, cohabiting in this space. None of this was designed to go together and the random coupling was strangely pleasing.

Clerkenwell provides an intriguing backdrop and the cheek-by-jowl multiplicity of the festival spirit brings it all to life.

The House of Detention still looks and smells of Victorian wickedness, dank, mischievous corners illuminated here and there with virtuous modern design.

The Farmiloe Building is the grand dame of decrepit splendour and here were many gems: from exquisite cabinet making by Pinch to the thoughtful material manipulation of Ligne Roset. Amongst the fascinating drabness of the Farmiloe there were good colours singing brightly, timbers were honeyed and honed, their conjunctions and folds revealed, telling tales of good, honest carpentry.

Jaguar & Anglepoise at The Farmiloe Building

Pinch in action...

This year, natural and heightened textures were in abundance replacing the patterns we’ve seen so much of in recent seasons. True innovation was harder to spot but the energy, graft and genuine ambition was evident all around.

..a shot from Material Lab...

Emma Booty is Creative Director and Head of Studio Conran.                    

Read more about what went on and what pieces we liked in our next post: Clerkenwell Design Week Part 2

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Filed under Clerkenwell Design Week, Conran and London

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