Design events to catch in October

A mixture of in-person and online events are slated for this month, covering topics like craft, innovation, furniture and sustainability.

Trade show: Decorex International

Billing itself as an “avenue of discovery”, this year’s Decorex International will take place from 10 to 13 October. A line-up of designers across the interiors space will be on show at London’s Olympia during the event – including several emerging designers, who will be on show in the Future Heritage showcase.

Alongside various products and furniture, the event will also feature a programme of talks. Topics this year’s speakers will cover will include how to commission artwork for an interiors project, the importance of colour and addressing waste in interior design.

Additionally, there will be multiple chances and areas dedicated to networking. At the centre of the space will be The Bar, an area in which visitors can relax and mingle, which has been designed by Irish designer Sara Cosgrove. Similarly, Liberty.Café is being billed as a “unique meeting place” for visitors and has been designed in collaboration with Liberty Fabrics.

When? 10 – 13 October.

More info: on the Decorex website.


Festival: Frequency Festival

Back for its 10-year anniversary, Lincoln-based digital creativity festival Frequency will be held from 28 to 31 October. Most events will be taking place outdoors around the city in a bid to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, some events will be online and accessible for everyone.

This year’s theme is “connection”. The programme of events addresses the theme in multiple ways, so there is “something for everyone” according to organisers. Visitors can expect to meet “soft” robots, journey through an “audio adventure”, and uncover the women history forgot.

Luma is the aforementioned soft robot, designed by Air Giants, and is one of the headline projects for 2021. A nine-metre-long inflatable snail, organisers hope the project will encourage visitors to interrogate how they view robots.

When? 28 – 31 October.

More info: on the Frequency website.


Installation: Lightfield

Located at London’s Marble Arch, Lightfield is a new “immersive” installation from sculptor Anthony James. It’s free to access, with the aim of “bringing people together” after a difficult year for the city’s arts and culture scene.

The installation will take place across three rooms in a 480 square-metre space. Inside, 12 “Transmorphic Cubes” made of stainless steel, specialised glass and LED lights will sit connected via ethernet cables. When grouped together, these sculptures explore the “concept of infinity” accord to their creator.

The overarching reference, James says, are birch tree forests. The effect will be an apparently endless space, controlled by a single computer, where light can “dance around”.

When? Until 24 October.

More info: via the Marble Arch Mound website.


Talk series: Design.Different

Part of the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design’s (HHCD) 30th birthday celebrations, Design.Different is a week of online events examining how design can make a difference today. The talk series will be free for all people to access, and will cover pressing issues around topics like race, age, ability, gender, sanitation and business. Talks will take place on Zoom.

Inclusivity will be at the centre of each talk. The week will kick of with an online launch event looking at how inclusive design should speak across age, ability, gender and race. Included in the talk, and those that follow, will be a showcase of new projects and ideas and disccussions around the theme.

On the event, HHCD director Rama Gheerawo says: “Inclusive design is an answer. With its people centred ethos, it can enable inclusion across all people, regardless of their differing characteristics and contexts. The ideas in the Design.Different week are really tools for conversation that represent an aspirational future for design.”

When? 11 – 15 October.

More info: on the RCA website.


Festival: London Craft Week

Another city-wide festival, this time in the capital, London Craft Week will bring together more than 250 established and emerging makers and designers from around the world in October. The selected exhibitors have been chosen “not on price or fame, but underlying substance”, according to organisers.

Events are diverse, representing both new and traditional crafting techniques. At The Mill Fabrica, craftspeople will be showcasing their sustainability-minded work, while Artisan Chelsea will focus on mediums like embroider and sculpture. Car manufacturer Lexus has collaborated with British craftspeople to produce pieces inspired by their cars, and Design-Nation has curated an online-only exhibition of its member.

As well as exhibited works, the festival will also include a talk programme and workshops throughout the week. Tuesday will see illustrator and print maker Nicholas Hughes deliver a class on hand printing; meanwhile designer Adam Nathaniel Furman will deliver a workshop on Wednesday on producing mosaic. Talks across the week will include those from furniture designer Tom Faulkner, Yinka Ilori and the 2020 Design Museum Designer in Residence Abiola Onabule.

When? 4 – 10 October.

More info: on the London Craft Week website.


Exhibition: Polar Zero

Opening at Glasgow Science Centre on 2 October, Polar Zero is described as “injecting an artistic cultural dimension” to the climate negotiations which will take place in the city later on in the year. Curators say the intention of the exhibition is to invite visitors to “pause and reflect” on humanity’s impact on the past, present and future climate.

The centrepiece of the exhibition is a cylindrical glass sculpture encasing Antarctic air from the year 1765 – a date that scientists say predates the Industrial Revolution. Also encased in glass is an Antarctic ice core containing trapped air bubbles. Curators say this reveals a unique record of our past climate. While the topic is a pressing one, and anxiety-inducing for many, organisers say the exhibition theme is one of hope and optimism.

Also included in the exhibition will be a soundscape of ancient air bubbles popping as an Antarctic Peninsula ice core emerges from an insulated tube. Additionally, Ice Stories will be a section dedicated to personal anecdotes, memories and oral testimonies from national and international scientists who have lived experiences of the Arctic and Antarctic.

When? 2 October.

More info: on the Glasgow Science Centre website.


What October events are in your diary? Let us know in the comments below…

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