If an overseas design aficionado was asked to put a face on British design, you can guarantee that Tom Dixon would be in the running.
Certainly, he appeared to be everywhere during the London Design Festival last September. He gave away 1000 environment-friendly Tom Dixon Lights in Trafalgar Square at the launch of an installation of 500 energy-saving lamps there, in what was one of the more meaningful publicity stunts of the festival. He was creative director of LDF flagship exhibition 100% Design, and created the Perfectly Balanced cocktail bar and a special Martini glass for Bombay Sapphire, among other things.
Ironically, though his presence at the LDF was enormous, Dixon wasn’t able to stick around for long. As creative director of Art & Technology – the company formed when he merged his London consultancy with Finnish furniture company Artek – he was expected in Scandinavia to take part in a design festival there that coincided with the LDF.
Dixon merits a place in the Hot 50 on the strength of his huge creative talent alone. His work for Habitat and his own furniture and lighting company, among others, is always interesting. Add to that his role as a shy ambassador for British design across the globe and you have a role model for future generations of designers.