Young and driven

Tuesday 10 May 2011

smart bring innovative, sustainable initiatives together in London showcase

The Future Minds Exhibition showcases 10 London-based initiatives that have been hand-picked as representatives of future thinking in culture and design.

Organised by smart and held at the smart urban stage on London's Southbank, the pop-up exhibition comprises two projects from each of the following categories: Culture and Society, Media and IT, Science, Architecture and Design, and were chosen by celebrity curators Jo Whiley, Lauren Laverne, Ortis Deley, Tom Dyckhoff and William Tempest.

The event aims to promote the work of forward-thinking innovators, while reinforcing notions of community and togetherness, particularly within oft-neglected urban contexts. The projects were selected on the basis of their positivity in light of the weak economy, originality and sustainability; notions that are shaping the future of our cities.

Architecture and design critic Tom Dyckhoff, curator of the architecture category, chose Sarah Wigglesworth Architects' proposal to ‘re-vision' the Robin Hood Gardens in East London as one of his two projects. This Brutalist building was originally built in 1972 and has caused much contention in the architectural media recently, with plans for its demolition on the horizon. On a broader level, Tom Dyckhoff's selection champions innovative, sustainable alternatives to destroying existing structures.

His second project was David Kohn Architects' and artist Fiona Banner's playful design for the Room for London concept. The temporary, boat-shaped installation will be a one-bedroom apartment on top of London's Southbank Centre where up to two people at a time can stay, as part of the London 2012 festival.

These selections reflect the growing importance of sustainable urbanism, and as Tom states: "nowhere more so than in the UK are there some really fascinating pieces of design being proposed and created." WAN asked Tom what he believed were the most important things for architects of this generation to take on board, to which he answered: "the word 'sustainability' will make many people start to nod off..." but stressed that it really is the most important thing to be taken into consideration - after all, our long-term future depends on it.

Amy Knight,
Arts & Media Correspondent

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United Kingdom

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