"Emerging talents require nurture" says Jan Hendzel

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Jan Hendzel


Jan Hendzel

More can be done to support emerging designers in London says Jan Hendzel, who curated an exhibition focused on emerging talent at this year’s London Design Festival.

Jan Hendzel Studio curated the 11:11 exhibition, which paired 11 established designers with 11 emerging designers, to draw attention to interesting south London designers.

Jan Hendzel
The 11:11 exhibition (top) was curated by Jan Hendzel (above)

“Our emphasis was on creating a platform to support the grassroots and emerging creators of south London,” Hendzel told Dezeen.

“By forging new relationships and connecting the established design industry with up-and-coming makers, 11:11 aims to create a more inclusive and diverse future in design.”

Bowater drawers by Jan Hendzel Studio alongside artwork by Carl Koch
Bowater drawers by Jan Hendzel Studio with Column I by Alison Crowther and Argentus by Dominic McHenry and Untitled Ceramic tiles by Carl Koch on wall

For the exhibition, 11 established designers – A Rum Fellow, Alison Crowther, Charlotte Kingsnorth, Daniel Schofield, Grain & Knot, Jan Hendzel Studio, Martino Gamper, Novocastrian, Sedilia, Simone Brewster, Raw Edges – each displayed their work alongside an emerging designer selected from an open call.

The emerging designers showcased were Alice Adler, Carl Koch, Dominic McHenry, Jacob Marks, Mariangel Talamas Leal, Moss, Silje Loa, Söder Studio, Unu Sohn, William Waterhouse and Woojin Joo.

Frames by Charlotte Kingsnorth
The Wrong Tree Picture Frame and Mirror by Charlotte Kingsnorth behind Thoroughly Odd by Woojin Joo

Hendzel believes that events like LDF can create space for emerging talents to showcase their work, but often focuses on university-educated designers.

“The importance of offering a platform to emerging talent, especially that of grassroots and local level creatives, is to offer empowerment and to demonstrate that design is a profession that can offer meaningful and exciting careers,” he said.

Lupita Lounge Chair by Mariangel Talamas Leal alongside Periscope Rug by A Rum Fellow and BUTW Floor Lamp by Charlotte Kingsnorth
Lupita Lounge Chair by Mariangel Talamas Leal alongside Periscope Rug by A Rum Fellow and BUTW Floor Lamp by Charlotte Kingsnorth

“When the design festival rolls into town, yes, I believe we do have platforms for emerging creatives; however, one big issue is that design shows can be cost-prohibitive and often focus on university-educated people, which by default puts the profession at the more elitist end of things,” he continued.

“If you don’t have cash or a degree then finding a platform to celebrate your ideas can be difficult.”

A Martino Gamper chair alongside a table by
A Martino Gamper chair alongside with F2 Dice and F2 Line by Moss on plinth by Jan Hendzel Studio.

He believes that LDF and others can do more to support emerging talents, and suggests that providing free space for exhibitions and installations would be a way of doing this.

“Emerging talents require nurture, they require safe places to practise their respective disciplines and they require opportunities for growth through connections and collaborations with established practitioners to elevate their craft,” he explained.

“A great opportunity would be to find and offer more free spaces to emerging groups, alongside bursaries and support packages in how to promote your event and develop your respective craft within a design district.”

Grain & Knot
Sculptural wall hangings by Grain & Knot with Pina Lamps by Jacob Marks

The exhibition, which is taking place at Staffordshire St gallery in Peckham, includes numerous pieces of furniture with chairs designed by Gamper and Leal, as well as drawers by Jan Hendzel Studio and Crowther.

Sedilia’s contribution was a Roll Top Chair and Roll Top Ottoman.

The exhibition also include mirrors designed by Jan Hendzel Studio, Novocastrian and Kingsnorth, and clothing by Soeder.

Also on display were lights by Schofield and by Marks.

The Port Free Mirror by Novocastrian alongside the Roll Top Chair and Roll Top Ottoman by Sedilia with Song 1 Awe-to Series by William Waterhouse hanging from ceiling and Draped in Wood by Silje Loa on a plinth
The Port Free Mirror by Novocastrian alongside the Roll Top Chair and Roll Top Ottoman by Sedilia with Song 1 Awe-to Series by William Waterhouse hanging from ceiling and Draped in Wood by Silje Loa on a plinth

Another exhibition showcasing the work of emerging designers at LDF was Drop02, which contained work from IKEA and H&M’s Atelier100 design incubator.

Other projects currently on display as part of the festival include a prototype modular furniture system by Zaha Hadid Design and furniture by Andu Masebo crafted from a scrapped car.

Smock 01 by Addison Soeder behind Landmark Coffee Table and Side Table with Ray Lamp by Daniel Schofield
Smock 01 by Addison Soeder behind Landmark Coffee Table and Side Table with Ray Lamp by Daniel Schofield

The photography is by BJ Deakin Photography.

The 11:11 exhibition takes place 16-24 September at the Staffordshire St gallery as part of London Design Festival 2023. See our London Design Festival 2023 guide on Dezeen Events Guide for information about the many other exhibitions, installations and talks taking place throughout the week.

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