Forest shoots at London Design Biennale tackle global crises
The London Design Biennale opened at Somerset House with hundreds of trees in the venue’s courtyard forming a ‘forest for change’ as the event explored climate, health, inequality and other crises of our time.
The exhibition, the first large-scale international cultural gathering in the city since the easing of restrictions linked to the pandemic, will run for three weeks with pavilions showcasing groundbreaking designs from countries and communities around the world, including the African diaspora and Antarctica.
The “Forest for Change” was designed by Es Devlin, artistic director of the Biennale, and is an interactive installation to raise awareness of the United Nations global goals. The idea was to “counter this attitude of human domination over nature, by allowing a forest to overtake the whole yard,” Devlin said on the event’s website.
“We now know that we have to live with nature, so by bringing a forest to the heart of the yard, we present this idea very, very clearly,” Biennale director Victoria Broackes told Reuters.
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On the terrace by the river outside, the Pavilion of the African Diaspora by American designer Ini Archibong takes the form of a vaulted shelter inspired by the shape of a cowrie, for centuries a currency in Africa. The structure will serve as an innovative multi-purpose educational and event center.
“The structural madness of the PoAD is a symbolic gateway to the past, present and future in the exploration of Repairs + Representations = Repair and resonance to energize our veil and take us on our continuous journey,” according to the website of the Biennale.
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