Melbourne Design Week 2019 – 6 Must-Sees

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This year’s Melbourne Design Week offers a thought-provoking mix of exhibitions, talks and tours. Take a peek…

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

2019’s Melbourne Design Week features more than 200 exhibitions, talks, tours, films and workshops, with events across town and in neighbouring city Geelong. Running from 14 to 24 March, Melbourne’s largest festival programme to date celebrates both local and international talent, with the core theme of ‘Design Experiments’ – asking how design can shape the future. A mix of ticketed and free activities embrace diverse challenges from the environment to social issues and materials. This year’s festival wraps up on Sunday, but many of the inspiring shows continue beyond the weekend. Here are six of our top FizzPicks…

‘SOMEWHERE OTHER’: JOHN WARDLE ARCHITECTS
Ground Level/Foyer, NGV Australia, Federation Square
Until 28 July (10am-5pm, free)

Visitors are invited to peek through five portals within timber and steel structure ‘Somewhere Other’, a compact, interactive experience by Melbourne practice John Wardle Architects. At NGV Australia until late July, this intriguing installation was first shown as part of 2018’s 16th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Architecture Biennale (pictured, top and above). Each of the wooden volumes, voids and apertures in its interconnected series frames views of the studio’s projects, the Australian landscape or the craft of collaborators including artist Natasha Johns-Messenger and filmmakers Coco and Maximilian.

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‘NEW VOLUMES BY ARTEDOMUS’: AN INSTALLATION BY FIONA LYNCH AND THOMAS COWARD
TDF Gallery, 14 Little Oxford Street, Collingwood
Until 24 March (11am-5pm, free)

We’re big fans of Artedomus’s ‘New Volumes’ collection, which showcases solid marble homewares by eight Australian designers. This Collingwood exhibition, curated by interior designer Fiona Lynch and designer Thomas Coward, represents the range in an installation that follows the journey of this sculptural material from the ‘ground to the house’, contrasted with a series of chunky marble plinths.

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‘MATERIAL THOUGHT’
Modern Times, 311 Smith Street, Fitzroy
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

Presented by Fitzroy interiors store Modern Times, group exhibition ‘Material Thought’ explores material through the work of innovative Australian designers. On show are furniture, lighting and objects by nine top talents, including Henry Wilson (‘Stone Surface Sconce’, in Calacatta Marble, above), Coco Flip and Christopher Boots, all illuminating themes of design experimentation and sustainability.

’CLEMENT MEADMORE: THE ART OF MID-CENTURY DESIGN’
Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne, Swanston Street
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

Fans of modernism will enjoy exhibition ‘Clement Meadmore: The art of mid-century design’, a homage to the acclaimed Australian talent. The first major survey of Meadmore’s industrial design practice, it explores the inspirations that shaped the renowned sculptor’s early career as a designer. Part of a new wave of Australian design in the Fifties and Sixties, Meadmore championed streamlined forms, fresh materials and new manufacturing processes. His furniture and lighting appeared in the houses of iconic architect Robin Boyd, with well known designs such as his 1951 corded dining chair on view at the Ian Potter Museum of Art.

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‘WELCOME TO WASTELAND’
Compound Interest, 15-25 Keele Street, Collingwood
Until 24 March (11am-5pm, free)

Presented by Friends & Associates, ‘Welcome to Wasteland’ shares the work of cutting-edge local talents involved with sustainable design. Featuring architects, industrial designers, furniture makers and researchers, the show explores the potential of waste materials recycled into fresh, eco-friendly products. Typically innovative is Vert Design’s ‘HuskeeCup’ made from coffee husk waste, their collaboration with Spark & Burnish to craft ‘Marine Debris Bakelite Door Knobs’, and Maddison Ryder’s use of discarded Iceberg lettuce to form ‘Lettuce Eat’ disposable plates. Other materials in the mix include waste glass, ceramic, plastic, oyster shells, rubber bands, paper pulp, denim jeans, pigs’ blood and even golf balls!

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WORK SHOP: FIONA LYNCH
7 Glasshouse Road, Collingwood
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

A curatorial showcase of experimental design, fine art and objects, interior designer Fiona Lynch’s new permanent gallery Work Shop aims to celebrate work by Australian and international designers and artists, as well as doubling as a testing ground for her own studio’s practice. For Melbourne Design Week, the debut show curates a selection of pieces examining the tension between resolved and incomplete elements, including ceramics by Olivia Walker (black porcelain collapsed vessel, above), burnt wood bowls by Makiko Ryujin, paintings by Jiaxin Nong and lighting design by Mary Wallis.

www.ngv.vic.gov.au/melbourne-design-week
Melbourne Design Week 2019 runs until Sunday 24 March at venues across the city and Geelong

Sydney Design Festival 2019 – 5 Must-Sees

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Sydney Design Festival 2019 brings inspiring exhibitions, talks and workshops to town. Here are five Fizz faves for getting your design on!

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Sydney Design Festival is back for 2019, unpacking new design, sharing emerging and established talents, and tackling design challenges. This year’s theme is ‘Accessing Design’, making design accessible to fresh audiences, with the action spread beyond the obvious inner-city hot spots. Running from 1 to 10 March – but with many shows lasting longer – the festival also shines a light on local design, including indigenous creativity, hosting events from exhibitions to talks, workshops, open studios, screenings and parties. Here are five of our #SDF19 Fizz faves…

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TOP: Sydney Design Festival keynote speaker Rachel Wingfield of Loop.pH with a range of dynamic past projects. ABOVE: Loop.pH’s ‘Arborescence’ installation for 2014’s Amsterdam Light Festival, proposing a future hybrid of trees and street lighting harnessing the studio’s signature bio-luminescence. Think sustainable ‘living lighting’

FESTIVAL KEYNOTE: RACHEL WINGFIELD OF LOOP.PH
Powerhouse Museum, 500 Harris Street, Ultimo
8 March (6pm-8pm)

London designer Rachel Wingfield, co-founder with Mathias Gmachl of Loop.pH, will give the festival keynote speech at Ultimo’s Powerhouse Museum. Launched in 2003, their spatial laboratory is known for cross-disciplinary designs that combine digital, light, art and craft details, often in public spaces. Exploring design, architecture and science, Loop.pH’s intriguing installations and experiences harness diverse materials from LEDs, electro-luminous fibres and NASA’s reflective silver mylar to carbon, bamboo and algae. Buy tickets to the talk online or check out Wingfield’s collaborative workshop ‘Archilace’ on Sunday 10 March (3pm-5pm).

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ABOVE: Mungo Scott Flour Mill, historic home to authentic Australian design showcase ‘Home.Grown’ in Summer Hill

HOME.GROWN//DISCOVERING AUSTRALIAN DESIGN
Mungo Scott Flour Mill, 2 Smith Street, Summer Hill
8-10 March

A three-day celebration of Australian furniture, lighting and home furnishings, ‘Home.Grown’ is presented by the Authentic Design Alliance and curated by its director Anne-Maree Sargeant. Expect three halls over two levels featuring exhibitions, installations and pop-ups, championing locally designed and made products and homegrown talents. All up you’ll discover around 175 designers and 100 brands. Ground Floor Hall 1 features a combined showcase of designers and smaller independent brands, spanning innovative lighting by Lumil, rugs by Designer Rugs and stylish storage by Sagitine, alongside a pop-up mini mart of Australian homewares available to buy from top3 by design. Installations occupy Ground Floor Hall 2, including ‘Undervalued’ by Nick Rennie, ‘Project Replica’ by Mitch Tobin, ‘Brand a Fake’ by ADA, ‘Used by 3018’ by Will Thompson, a Mercedes-Benz Design Award display and atmospheric photos of the historic venue itself. Upstairs, the First Floor Gallery presents curated zones by 10 established Australian design brands, including Nau, Catapult, Didier, Furnished Forever and Artedomus (‘New Volumes’). Talks, starring talents including Adam Goodrum, Adam Cornish and Christina Bricknell, tackle issues affecting the country’s design scene. The location is a wow too, with the event taking over the 1922 Mungo Scott Flour Mill. A free preview afternoon on Friday 8 March is by RSVP only; for the weekend, buy advance tickets cheaper online or snap them up at the door.

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ABOVE: Trent Jansen’s ‘Tidal Lounger’ chairs and ‘Tidal Coffee Table’, made from premium stainless steel wire for Australian outdoor living brand Tait, feature in ADC’s exhibition ‘Steel’

STEEL: ART DESIGN ARCHITECTURE
Australian Design Centre, 101-115 William Street, Darlinghurst
Until 3 April (closed Sundays and Mondays)

Discover the innovative ways artists, designers and architects are using steel in the 21st century at this major touring exhibition from Adelaide’s JamFactory. Free to visit at Darlinghurst’s Australian Design Centre, it showcases the work of 29 Australian creatives, including Korban/Flaubert’s bold steel sculptures, Trent Jansen’s wave-inspired ‘Tidal’ outdoor furniture collection for Tait, and BVN’s graphic Australian PlantBank research building at Mount Annan in New South Wales. A selection of steely works is also displayed across the road at Stylecraft’s showroom (24/100 William Street). Fancy some craft shopping? ADC hosts a Makers Market on Saturday 9 March (10am-4pm), featuring more than 27 local makers.

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ABOVE: ‘Purple with Black, White and Blue’ photo (detail) by Jon Setter, part of the artist’s exhibition ‘The Urban Text’ at design store Koskela

JON SETTER: THE URBAN TEXT
Koskela, 1/85 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery
Until 31 March

This series of 12 minimal photographs explores the unnoticed aspects of urban environments and our everyday streetscapes. Detroit-born, Sydney-based Jon Setter’s free exhibition ‘The Urban Text’ is on show at inspiring design store Koskela in Rosebery, so call in for a culture fix, then stick around to shop for Australian-made furniture, homewares and accessories. The artworks are available to buy as unframed prints in three sizes, and their abstract, graphic, simple, colour-block style will look a treat on your wall. Feeling peckish? Three Blue Ducks cafe shares this atmospheric former factory space.

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ABOVE: Bernabei Freeman’s contemporary ceramic ‘Hybrid Vessel’ (2018), incorporating 3D-printed ABS and handwoven rattan, is part of digital craft show ‘Femufacture’ at The Japan Foundation

FEMUFACTURE: JAPANESE AND AUSTRALIAN DESIGN
The Japan Foundation Gallery, Level 4, Central Park, 28 Broadway, Chippendale
Until 30 March (closed Sundays)

Lovers of craft and design will enjoy cutting-edge exhibition ‘Femufacture’, which explores the interface of craft traditions and digital fabrication technologies. Hosted by The Japan Foundation Gallery, upstairs in Chippendale’s Central Park mall, it features new works by Japanese and Australian women including 3D-printed ceramic and hand-woven rattan vessels by Melbourne’s Bernabei Freeman (Rina Bernabei and Kelly Freeman). Mediums include weaving, wood turning, indigo-dyeing, paper cut, silversmithing and knitting, combined with 3D printing, CNC machining, coding and robotics. The show also includes wearable technology by light artist Erina Kashihara, who joins the gallery’s free panel discussion to mark International Women’s Day (8 March, 6.30pm-8pm).

sydneydesign.com.au/2019

Sydney Design Festival 2019 runs until Sunday 10 March at venues across the city, but many events continue beyond this weekend. For more inspiration check out SDF’s suggested itineraries, from free and family-friendly ideas to sustainable thinking and design after dark.

LDF 2018 – 5 Must-Sees at the V&A

Five FizzPicks at the V&A for London Design Festival, including architecture, installations and dazzling pattern

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

A magnet for design fans, the Victoria and Albert Museum is the buzzy Festival Hub for London Design Festival for the 10th year running, with a cluster of special V&A Projects including architecture, installations and graphic design displays (until 23 September). You’ll also find exhibitions, talks, tours and workshops as part of LDF at the V&A. Here are five fresh designs you won’t want to miss…

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‘MULTIPLY’: WAUGH THISTLETON ARCHITECTS
Start at sculptural, recently launched space The Sackler Courtyard at the V&A, where temporary architectural pavilion ‘MultiPly’ has taken up residence (until 1 October). A nine-metre-high, modular maze-like installation made from American tulipwood, this pop-up project is by Waugh Thistleton Architects, supported by the American Hardwood Export Council and engineered by ARUP. It’s designed to be interactive, so you can clamber around inside. Come evening the pavilion glows with light by SEAM Design. Playfully appealing, it’s also a serious exploration of modular construction and sustainable housing, addressing climate change and housing need.

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‘THE ONION FARM’: HENRIK VIBSKOV
Danish fashion designer Henrik Vibskov is the wild mind behind ‘The Onion Farm’, a colourful installation in the V&A’s dimly lit, long, narrow Tapestries Gallery. Like a quirky car wash, it’s intended to brush visitors as they pass through, care of its vibrant, spindle-like industrial brushes and red textile ‘onions’. Somewhat surreal, it’s like something scary growing in the dark, but also riffs on ancient weaving techniques and nature scenes that chime in with the background tapestries. Don’t be afraid to get touchy-feely…

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‘DAZZLE’: PENTAGRAM x 14-18 NOV
Design studio Pentagram reinterprets experimental First World War ‘dazzle’ camouflage in ‘Dazzle’ at The Creative Studio (Level 4). Originally painted onto the surface of ships to protect them from U-boat attacks, ‘dazzle’ camouflage was first championed by British artist Norman Wilkinson. Inspired by Cubism, Vorticism and animal camouflage, he used graphic shapes to break up the profile of vessels against the sea and sky. Pentagram reinterprets the ‘dazzle’ motifs, taking them from pure graphic design into a typographic exploration. Letterforms and words from wartime poem ‘Suspense’ by Wilfrid Wilson Gibson are abstracted into immersive, monochrome patterns on a huge scale. Co-commissioned by 14-18 Now, which curates new work for the UK’s WW1 centenary commemorations, and Liverpool Biennial, this high-impact space is sure to dazzle.

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‘MEMORY & LIGHT’: ARVO PÄRT X ARUP
Music and design meet in ‘Memory & Light’, a collaborative installation by Estonian contemporary composer Arvo Pärt and engineers Arup curated by Clare Farrow. Conceived for the V&A’s Norfolk House Music Room, this multi-sensory experience was born from Pärt’s words: ‘I could compare my music to white light, which contains all colours. Only a prism can divide the colours and make them appear; this prism could be the spirit of the listener.’ Cue a transparent, curved Perspex screen and a luxe listening booth, upholstered in Poltrona Frau leather, allowing visitors to experience the music through state-of-the-art speakers.

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‘A FOUNTAIN FOR LONDON’: MICHAEL ANASTASSIADES
How do you combat disposable plastic water bottle use? Make using public water fountains a pleasure. Designer Michael Anastassiades has come up with ‘The Fleet’, a luxurious new prototype for ‘A Fountain for London’, on display in the V&A’s John Madejski Garden and Brompton Design District (at Thurloe Place opposite South Kensington station). Aimed at reviving drinking fountain culture, it’s an initiative by The London Fountain Co. (founded by publisher Charles Asprey and curator Jane Withers). Robust yet elegant, the fountain comes in bronze, stone or cast iron, and will include wall-mounted and park-friendly versions. Sipping free water never looked so eco-chic…

londondesignfestival.com; vam.ac.uk

The Victoria and Albert Museum is at Cromwell Road, London SW7; admission to most events is free.

The Big Design Market Melbourne

For stylish Christmas gifts get down to The Big Design Market in Melbourne this weekend

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

For three inspiring days of Christmas shopping, backdropped by alluring architecture and fuelled by gourmet food and drink, make for The Big Design Market in Melbourne, from Friday 2 to Sunday 4 December at Carlton Gardens' Royal Exhibition Building. This homegrown design fair has won a loyal following over the last few years for its cred line-up of local talent, with 2016 gathering more than 230 designers for your delectation. Expect handmade crafts, design, homewares, fashion, jewellery, cards, art, accessories, kids' kit and more, drawn from Australian and international independents.

Look out for bespoke installations by guest artists too, including vibrant paper hangings by Benja Harney of Paperform, who has worked with fashion labels Hermès, Kenzo, Adidas and Romance Was Born, plus the Kaldor Public Art Projects. Mornington Peninsula furniture firm Industria X has also collaborated with six designers – including ceramicists Bridget Bodenham and Leah Jackson, and artist Leah Bartholomew – to create custom stools for the cocktail lounge.

TOP: Benja Harney's vibrant paper art will decorate the market
ABOVE: LED neon lighting by Electric Confetti; 'Bell Tent' by Homecamp, ideal for creating airy garden rooms; The Australian-designed 'Cape Classic' blanket from the 'Eastern Point' collection by Kate & Kate

Fizz picks include Electric Confetti's rainbow-bright neon lighting; Here and Far's graphic Japanese ceramics; Cottage Industry's kooky local crafts; and TheSuperCool and Design Dispensary for global design finds. Able and Game and Surfing Sloth are your go-tos for witty local cards. For art, visit Studio Cockatoo and Heide Museum of Modern Art's stalls. Corky Saint Clair and Bride & Wolf will kit you out in quirky modern jewellery. Also look out for contemporary South Australian furniture, lighting and accessories on the JamFactory stand. Memobottle's slimline water vessels and Orbitkey's ergonomic key fobs are great for guys; gals will love Kleins Perfumery and Leif for Australian native-inspired toiletries. For eco design, the Melb-made 'Rhombus' table trivets from Champ Co are formed from recycled aeroplane tyres.

ABOVE: Carlton's Royal Exhibition Building hosts The Big Design Market; Powder-coated steel 'Minimo' table-top plant stand by Capra Designs, shown with eco resin pot; Leah Bartholomew's artworks, including 'Philodendron' and 'Xanadu' acrylics on timber board, and 'Stay with Me' acrylic on canvas; Industria X stools in collaboration with Leah Bartholomew, Bridget Bodenham and Leah Jackson, featured in the cocktail lounge

You can eat and drink local too, with Melbourne foodie faves Beatbox Kitchen, Misschu, Taco Truck and Earl Canteen serving up snacks, LuxBite and Gelato Messina keeping the sweet treats coming, Sensory Lab serving coffee, and Port Melbourne's Starward Whisky, Merricks General Wine StoreSofi Spritz and cider co-op Faire Ferments pouring quality drops.

ABOVE: 'Geo Floral' shoulder bag handprinted with teal foiling by Tinker by Printink Studio; Orbitkey's key organiser in aqua; Botanical body balm by Leif; Kid-friendly 'Kinetic Sand' includes a bonding agent, making it easy to sculpt; 'Broad Strokes' digitally printed dog bed and 'Confetti' leather collar by Nice Digs; Melbourne's Sensory Lab will be brewing coffee

Fancy putting your own talents to the test? Then why not join in with the market's creative workshops? You can design and block-print tea towels with Home-Work, create and decorate rope baskets with Gemma Patford, make block-printing stamps to customise cards and gift wrap with Beci Orpin, or learn the trade secrets of terrariums with Petite Green. Sessions are selling out fast, so get in quick. Rock up early for a chance to buy a designer showbag ($25 each, but worth $200), limited to 300 each day and drawn from the stallholders (think sneaky presents for your posse). Remember, it's the thought that counts...
melbourne.thebigdesignmarket.com

ABOVE: Workshops include block-printing with Home-Work and basket decorating with Gemma Patford


The Big Design Market is at Royal Exhibition Building, 9 Nicholson Street, Carlton, Melbourne, from 2-4 December 2016; Fri 10am-9pm, Sat 10am-7pm, Sun 10am-5pm; adults $2, free for kids 12 and under. See our earlier post for more on Sydney's market last week

London Design Biennale 2016

Visions of Utopia from over 30 countries have taken over Somerset House in the first London Design Biennale

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

The debut London Design Biennale is staking its place in the cultural calendar, rivalling Venice's famous art and architecture biennales. Taking over the whole of Somerset House for three weeks until 27 September, in partnership with Jaguar, the event is a veritable United Nations of talent. Challenged to explore the theme of ‘Utopia by Design’, 37 countries and territories from six continents have created inspiring new installations, artworks and prototypes.

TOP: 'Chakraview', India's vibrant installation by Sumant Jayakrishnan
BELOW: Chile's retro-futurist 'The Counterculture Room' by FabLab Santiago; Albania's stainless steel 'Bliss' sculpture by Helidon Xhixha; Israel's 'Human.Touch', by Yaniv Kadosh, explores first-aid drops for disaster zones; Spain's 'VPolis, Diving into the Future', by Dimeloami Productions and Maria Levene, looks at smart cities

Part of Somerset House’s celebration of the 500th anniversary of Sir Thomas More’s radical 1516 text ‘Utopia’, the biennale champions the role of design to improve our future, addressing modern issues from pollution to migration, social equality to sustainability. Commissioned by leading design museums and organisations, top designers, architects, artists, writers and scientists have generated an entertaining mix of immersive digital installations, culinary pop-ups, kinetic sculptures, performances and VR renderings. They include homages to unrealised past utopias, innovative solutions for 21st century problems and bold imaginings of future societies.

As Biennale president Sir John Sorrell said, 'All over the world, nations and cities are increasingly recognising the power of design to bring social change and economic growth.' Countries from Austria to Nigeria, Mexico, South Africa and Taiwan took part, but here are our fave five FizzPicks…


LEBANON
Sometimes real life is forgotten in the cerebral world of design, which tends to flock around Western values. No wonder then, that French-born Annabel Karim Kassar’s vibrant recreation of a bustling Beirut street on the Thames waterfront feels like a breath of fresh air. At medal-winning ‘Mezzing In Lebanon’ you can get a wet shave at the authentic barber’s shop, enjoy street snacks of falafel and pomegranate juice, or just marvel at the painted posters, old-school utes and piles of tempting oranges. Street signs, coffee stalls, a small lounge cinema, carts and convivial chaos hint at the way ordinary people worldwide occupy sociable space.


THE NETHERLANDS
You’ll feel blue in the surreal sculptural space curated by The Netherlands. Taking the archive as a future arbiter, Studio Makkink & Bey has created an evocative blue foam tone-on-tone diorama. Entitled ‘Design Diorama: The Archive as a Utopic Environment’, these products and memorabilia, sourced from the home of Dutch architect Rianne Makkink and designer Jurgen Bey, form a potent autobiographical display, exploring the ways designers and institutions curate objects and collect history.


UNITED KINGDOM
Representing the UK, London design duo Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby’s installation ‘Forecast’, in collaboration with the Victoria and Albert Museum, is a striking 14-metre-high blue kinetic sculpture that moves with the wind. Occupying the outdoor Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court, it explores the nation’s nautical past and its innovative relationship with renewable energy, drawing on engineeering by Arup. Proof that eco-friendly can be easy on the eye too.


AUSTRALIA
London-based Australian designer Brodie Neill (of Made In Ratio) tackles the pressing issue of ocean waste in his installation ‘Plastic Effects’, forming the beautiful ‘Gyro’ table from fragments of harvested and recycled marine micro-plastic. The terrazzo-like composite is inlaid in a dreamy kaleidoscopic pattern. With five trillion plastic items estimated to pollute the world’s oceans, many of them washing up on Australia’s beaches, this once-utopian material now poses a huge challenge for the environment.


TURKEY
‘The Wish Machine’, Turkey’s entry by Istanbul architecture/design duo Autoban, is a contemporary take on a wish tree, on which people tie notes of hope. Walk through the tunnel of transparent, pneumatic hexagonal tubes, then feed your handwritten wish message into an opening and watch it glide away. At the Fizz, we wish for a brighter future for all, aided by imaginative design…
londondesignbiennale.com

BELOW: A colourful contribution from India, including circular forms and trad textiles; Pakistan's 'Daalaan' adult playroom features wood objects, spinning tops and henna-dye screen prints; Spain's take on new tech

London Design Biennale (#LDB16) is at Somerset House, Strand, London WC2, from 7–27 September 2016. Open daily from 11am; tickets £15 (concessions £10), on sale via Ticketmaster.

Pictures: Ed Reeve; Gui Bonsiepe (Chile)