Words by MPDClick’s Home & Interiors Editor…
Forgotten Spaces is a new exhibition at Somerset House that looks to the future development of our cities with an alternative vision. Running from October 20th 2011 to January 29th 2012, it is based on an open ideas competition run by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), where engineers, architects, students and designers were invited to submit proposals for overlooked spaces across London.
Judged by a panel that included Paul Finch of Architects’ Journal and Tamsie Thomason of RIBA London, the shortlist includes a range of innovative and far reaching ideas of how to put to use forgotten sites in London. Our cities are awash with derelict and unloved spaces that could be reclaimed and made special. With an estimated five billion people living in cities by 2030, in is important to make sure we use all the space we have. The competition aims to offer alternative and imaginative visions for these areas, with highlight proposals including city grottos, rooftop social hubs, artist-inhabited church spires and underground climbing tunnels.
Urbanisation is a major issue and has inspired new movements in design and lifestyle such as ‘rurban living’, where a rural way of life is being re-contextualised into the urban environment though micro farming, pocket gardens and city foraging. Retailers and designers alike need to aware of how exhibitions like Forgotten Spaces can challenge and provoke design ideas for the future, as well as the effect it can have on both retail spaces and themes in fashion, design and visual merchandising.
Image source: RIBA