No one has battled so passionately to promote emerging design talent as Peta Levi. The London graduate showcase New Designers, held annually at the Business Design Centre in Islington, was her brainchild more than 20 years ago and she has gone on to establish organisations such as the Design Trust and Eureka to help designers across various disciplines to run their businesses more effectively and find collaborators on the client side, particularly in retail.
The Design Trust, a registered charity founded by Levi in 1994, is home to Design Nation, which was set up in 1999 and boasts some 140 designers as members. It joined forces with London Metropolitan University in 2005, which has provided it with a base and resources to help it develop.
Among the trust’s initiatives is Eureka, which puts Design Nation members together with retailers and manufacturers to develop new product lines. Areas covered include furniture, textiles, ceramics, lighting and domestic accessories.
A couple of years ago, the Laurent Perrier Design Award was launched to honour one of the Design Nation contenders in the Eureka project.
Levi, a journalist by background, was awarded an MBE for her efforts in promoting design. She is a tireless and resourceful champion of contemporary UK design. ‹