“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” William Morris
Design influences the look of our homes and how we live in them. This special exhibition showcases innovation and creativity in domestic design from London and beyond, highlighting how designers respond to issues such as efficiency, sustainability, durability, usefulness and beauty. It will give a glimpse of what’s new and what we might expect to have in our homes in the future.
Useful + beautiful brings together recent work by both fresh new talents and well-established industry figures such as Jasper Morrison, Tord Boontje, Barber Osgerby, Doshi Levien and Tomoko Azumi. A broad range of domestic products, from furniture to wallpaper, lighting to homewares will be on show, spilling out into the museum’s gardens with a display of inventive garden furniture design. An element of interactivity will run throughout the show, and visitors will have the opportunity to try out some of the objects for themselves.
On show will be a mix of mass produced, batch produced, handmade, and experimental pieces. Examples include the Rising Chair by Robert van Embricqs, which literally ‘rises up’ from a flat sheet to become a three-dimensional seat; the Credenza O sideboard by JiB Studio which features sunken storage with ceramic pots to create an ‘indoor garden’; the winged Capo chair by Doshi Levien (pictured), perfect for privacy/solitude; and the Dandelight by Studio Drift, a beautiful and fragile object created by applying real dandelion seeds to an Led light – an inspired fusion of nature and technology.
The show coincides with the Geffrye’s centenary and celebrates one of its original purposes – to inspire the local furniture-making industry. A rich programme of events highlighting contemporary domestic design will run throughout the show, including talks by the curator and featured designers, a debate on the future of design, workshops and activities for children.