The 18th edition of London Design Festival returns to the capital this autumn from 12 – 20 September 2020 as a symbol of London’s determination to maintain its creative and cultural leadership. Since its inception in 2003, London Design Festival has played a key role in bringing together the greatest thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators to celebrate and promote design annually across the capital, and to put a spotlight on London’s creative brilliance. London has the largest creative economy of any city in the world, and its design reputation is internationally renowned.
One in six people in London work in the creative industries and it has been the fastest-growing sector of the economy in recent years, but the effects and impact of the pandemic have disproportionately affected the creative industries, causing a catastrophic setback to the sector. Following a number of cancellations and closures, the Festival this September will provide a platform for the design community to showcase work at a time when it is needed more than ever, helping to stimulate the creative economy and support young and emerging designers as well as more established names.
While international travel continues to be affected, this year’s Festival will have a strong local focus and will be a Festival for Londoners. In addition to Landmark Projects and Festival Commissions, Partner events across the Design Districts will enable visitors to walk between shows and discover something new. Physical installations will take place alongside virtual exhibitions, and a digital edition of the Global Design Forum will bring the latest design thinking to a global audience and allow the widest possible access to creative content.
This year will also see the introduction of a new digital portal for freelancers to promote their work across the Festival’s platforms. London Design Festival Director, Ben Evans CBE says, “The show must go on. Showcasing is essential for the sector to survive and this year, more than ever, we are determined to offer every opportunity for designers to be seen and heard.”
Justine Simons OBE, Deputy Mayor for Culture and the Creative Industries, said: “It is great news that London Design Festival will take place this year, providing a much-needed platform for creatives and a confidence boost for the capital. Culture and the creative industries will playa central role in accelerating our recovery from COVID-19, and the Festival will continue to strengthen London’s position as the design capital of the world.”