Picks of the month: the best design events to catch in February

From fake love letter design, to a real-life wedding chapel at Fortnum & Mason, these are the design events to watch out for in February.

Book: Fake Love Letters, Forged Telegrams, and Prison Escape Maps

Although rarely given more than a second or two of airtime, graphic film props are an integral part of any on-screen fictional world. From newspapers, to family photos and party invitations, these pieces are researched extensively and designed with painstaking detail. Here, Dublin-based graphic designer Annie Atkins explores her role in helping create a believable narrative for some of the world’s best-loved stories through 200 illustrations.

When: The book will be released on 14 February 2020.

Info: The book is published by Phaidon and is available for pre-order for £24.95.


Fair: International Art Fair for Modern Craft and Design: Collect 2020

This month, the International Art Fair for Modern Craft and Design: Collect 2020 will descend on Somerset House for the first time in its 16-year history. Dedicated to the celebration of living creatives, this year will see the fair invite 40 galleries from three continents display their wares –representing more than 400 artists across its four days.

This year, organisers are suggesting visitors check out its “best yet” specialist glass gallery exhibitors, and its 12 craft-led installations, which will tackle issues as diverse as climate change, nature and dementia, through mediums and practices including metal and glasswork, embroidery and ceramic.

When: 27 February – 1 March 2020.

Where: Somerset House, London, WC2R 1LA.

Info: Tickets can be purchased from the Somerset House website, and prices start from £19.50.


Exhibition: Toulouse-Lautrec and the Masters of Montmartre

Displaying more than 80 posters, Toulouse-Lautrec and the Masters of Montmartre will explore work of a number of 19th-century creatives who helped pave the way for modern graphic designers. Centred in the show, will be the work of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, the printer who made his name by bypassing the glamour and showcasing Paris’ underworld of “flamboyancy, free-spiritedness and debauchery” – the most famous of his clients being the Moulin Rouge. The exhibition itself will pay homage to the drama of Parisian poster culture, by displaying the pieces in their original giant format from floor to ceiling.

When: 15 February – 26 May 2020.

Where: Victoria Art Gallery, Bath, BA2 4AT.

Info: Tickets can be purchased from the Victoria Art Gallery website or on the door. A 10% is applied to those purchased online – prices start (online) from £4.05.


Conference: Creative Change Makers

Split across three venues over four days, the Creative Change Makers conference will explore how the creative industries influence social and environmental issues. Day one will see visitors at the Design Museum, where the topics to be discussed will revolve around the impact of design on mental health and wellbeing. Following this, day two will be held at Havas KX, and days three and four at Ravensbourne University. Speakers across the three days include staff from Extinction Rebellion, UsTwo, the BBC, the Guardian and Pentagram.

When: 5 – 8 February 2020.

Where: The Design Museum, London, W8 6AG; Havas HQ, London, N1C 4AG; and Ravensbourne University, London, SE10 0EW.

Info: More information about timings and tickets can be found here.


Talk: Why Does Service Design Matter?

The latest instalment of D&AD’s Design Nights series, Why Does Service Design Matter? will explore examples of projects that have truly considered the end-to-end experience, both online and offline. Led by Katherine Wastell, head of design at Co-Op Digital, and Ben Terrett, designer and CEO at Public Digital, visitors can expect to learn more about how “effective service is more than digital screens and interactions”.

When: 12 February, 6pm-9pm.

Where: D&AD HQ, London, E2 6EH.

Info: Tickets cost £10.00, or admission is free to members. More information can be found here.


Also check out:

  • CBBC Games Half Term, 15 – 23 February 2020, The National Science and Media Museum, Bradford, BD1 1NQ: Getting children out of the house, while still providing the engaging entertainment they love, this event at the National Science and Media Museum gives families the chance to try out new child-friendly videogames and have a go at coding.
  • The Chapel of Love, 1 – 29 February 2020, Fortnum & Mason, London, W1A 1ER: If you’re still stuck for things to do, pop down to Fortnum & Mason for a quick wedding at the newly-opened, limited-run Chapel of Love installation. Designed in-house to celebrate the season of love, the 14-metre structure features a fully functional chiming bell, stained glass windows and a neon sign.

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