16 designers Mark-ing ordinary objects

The British Council’s new exhibition at Gallery Libby Sellers will shine a light into the chasm between British and Japanese design.

Ismini Samanidou, Double Line, 2012
Ismini Samanidou, Double Line, 2012

Mark-ing will celebrate the cultural differences between the two countries through the work of 16 contemporary designers, eight from Britain and eight from Japan. Each designer took an ordinary object as their starting point, which ranged from a paintbrush and a cotton bud to a corrugated sheet and pieces of coral.

Paul Cocksedge, Change the Record, 2011
Paul Cocksedge, Change the Record, 2011

London-based designer Paul Cocksedge’s Change the Record is one of the show’s quirky offerings. The smartphone speaker is made from an old vinyl record that has been heated and moulded into a cone shape, meaning it can perfectly amplify sound without the need for wires or electricity.

Max Lamb, Hexagonal pewter stool, 2008
Max Lamb, Hexagonal pewter stool, 2008

Max Lamb’s Hexagonal Pewter Stool was influenced by the designer’s childhood spent frolicking on the beaches of Cornwall and building sandcastles. Lamb made the stool on his favourite stretch of beach in Caerhays using a primitive form of sand-casting, hence its earthy appeal. 

Japanese designer and architect Koichi Futatsumata’s In the Sky, a wire mobile made of delicate interlocking rods of steel, is a realisation of the fragile balance which occurs when branches naturally fall and tangle with one another, while Ismini Samanidou’s Double Line, a giant woven jacquard, took inspiration from a lace sample designed by Samanidou’s great grandfather.

Koichi Futatsumata, In the Sky, 2010
Koichi Futatsumata, In the Sky, 2010

The diverse collection, which features sculptures, textiles and pieces of furniture, will encourage spectators to question how social and culture idiosyncrasies can shape a designer’s output.

Maiko Kurogouchi, Skeleton, 2010
Maiko Kurogouchi, Skeleton, 2010

Mark-ing will be at Gallery Libby Sellers, 41-42 Berners Street, London, W1T from 10 – 25 January 2013.

Benjamin Hubert, Pelt,  2012
Benjamin Hubert, Pelt, 2012

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