Eastern promise

East London’s Stepney Green is often overlooked, for all its Kray-besmirched historic charm.

Stepney Sailor, Jennie Sharman-Cox
Stepney Sailor, Jennie Sharman-Cox

Lacking the hipster credentials of neighbours Hackney and Dalston; the curry-house fame of Brick Lane or the Booze Britain-esque, er, charm of Shoreditch (come the weekend, at least), it’s a quieter, more understated cousin to its neighbours.

Light Fitting, Petra Storrs
Light Fitting, Petra Storrs

However, 30 designers have proved that there is a whole lot to celebrate in the area. A new show opening today in Stepney Green’s beautiful art deco Genesis cinema will display objects created in responded to the area, in a show curated by design bloggers Dezeen, the Londoneer and London Plinth.

Olympic paintings  rhythmic gymnastics diving and gymnastics, Niki Gibbs
Olympic paintings rhythmic gymnastics diving and gymnastics, Niki Gibbs

All the designers were selected due to their proximity to the area, and were invited to submit pieces that responded to the area.

When Tables Turn, Tinsel Edwards and Twinkle Troughton
When Tables Turn, Tinsel Edwards and Twinkle Troughton

Some have taken the brief rather literally – such as amusingly-named designers Tinsel Edwards and Twinkel Troughton, who have created the When Tables Turn piece, depicting an unnerving panorama emblazoned with slogans cherry-picked form the Stepney locale, such as ‘middle class scum’.

Lightbox, Kaniez Braganza
Lightbox, Kaniez Braganza

Other works have less obvious links with the area, such as the gorgeous monochrome swirlings of Kaniz Braganza’s lightbox, or Phil Cuttance’s cute Cubist-style turquoise vase.

Stepney Vase, Phil Cuttance
Stepney Vase, Phil Cuttance

It’s great to see the wonderful work of Lauren Baker, selected, whose distinctive decorated skulls we spotted at Designersblock during London Design Festival this year, too:

Deer head, Lauren Baker
Deer head, Lauren Baker

The exhibition runs until the end of December at 93-95 Mile End Road, London E1

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