The House of Detention in East London’s design industry district must be one of the most atmospheric and surprising venues you can find for an exhibition.
Clerkenwell Design Week 2012 have exploited the architecture of this subterranean Victorian prison to create a stunning backdrop for international and local cutting-edge design. Based in the heart of London’s design district, the exhibition showcases some of the world’s most exciting up-and-coming talent with boutique designers side-by-side with international companies.
Walking around Clerkenwell and visiting different venues we found many hidden treasures in the labyrinth of little streets, bars and cafes, shops and galleries packed with interesting ideas. The setting of old industrial warehouses with their high ceilings and bricked walls was perfect with high quality new design concepts. This really demonstrated how old and new can be organically combined and complement each other.
We were impressed by innovative and sometimes complex ideas as well as some incredibly simple solutions. We loved the use of cardboard boxes in the environmental treatment of a top floor bar and the simple beauty of untouched oak for a dining table.
It is refreshing to see that people keep creating new things, complex and simple, and that there is still a place in this age for the designs inherited from centuries ago. Clearly Jaguar recognize the value of heritage and contemporary design as the lead sponsors of the event!