Scarlet Bailey Tait
PAD London, the highly regarded design fair, will be taking place in the capital between 10-15 October. The week-long event is held in Berkeley Square, in the heart of Mayfair and for its 15th edition it will showcase submissions from 62 world-leading galleries across Europe, Asia and North America – representing the best in contemporary and historical design.
Founded in 2007 by Parisian antique dealer Patrick Perrin, PAD London was the first UK fair to be devoted to international design. PAD London’s sister fair in Paris was launched a few years earlier, in 1998, and takes place every April in the Jardin des Tuileries. Held as annual events in the two capitals, the carefully curated selection of works for both is devised to inspire art consultants, curators, interior designers and the general public and champion craftsmanship and innovation from over 30 countries.
PAD’s 2023 edition sees galleries debuting the works of 13 first-time exhibitors who are currently breaking new ground in the design world, all delivering their fresh takes on contemporary design.
One of the most outstanding shows at the fair is Objects with Narratives, which will display the latest bold wooden furniture by self-taught Romanian designer Mircea Anghel, as well as remarkable bronze light-installations by Bulgarian artist Vladimir Slavov. Also, look out for Indian gallery Æquõ, which will be showcasing French designers Valériane Lazard and Florence Louisy’s latest cutting-edge designs in wood, silver and brass, with a focus on India’s ancient craft traditions through the gallery’s collaborative work with local craftspeople. Also worth a visit are crafts specialist Gallery LVS & Craft which will premiere porcelain vessels by Lee In Hwa, Kim Deok Ho and Kim Dong Jun, whose works unite traditional and modern methods.
New to PAD this year is Parisian ceramic specialist Raphaella Riboud-Seydoux, who will display a selection of unique contemporary pieces including colourful geometric vases by one of the creators of the Memphis Group, Nathalie du Pasquier, and intricate sculptures made from chestnut branches by French artist Vincent Laval. Rio de Janeiro-born Luiz Kessler’s gallery JCRD Design will exhibit some of the best 20th-century Brazilian furniture from design masters Joaquim Tenreiro, Lina Bo Bardi, Jorge Zalszupin and José Zanine Caldas.
Previous exhibitors at the top of their game in contemporary design will return this year to display their newest pieces. Among these, Barcelona’s SIDE Gallery will unveil compelling works by British designer Charlotte Kingsnorth, Dutch artist Sabine Marcelis and Korean designer Gyuhan Lee, known for upcycling materials – all referencing the 1970s Global Tools movement, ranging from Italian Radical Architecture to Conceptual Art.
This year, various designers are testing the limits of ceramics with their innovative furniture, sculptures and objects. French ceramicist Agnès Debizet (Galerie Mélissa Paul), Turkish designer Isin Sezgi Avci (88 Gallery), New York-based artist William Coggin and Dutch designer Rino Claessens (Galerie Scène Ouverte) will present their original furniture-based pieces.
Among the new commissions at the fair are a series of monumental chandeliers. Danish glass artist Stine Bidstrup, who explores optical phenomena, will present Light Entanglements, an eye-catching chandelier featuring elegant clusters of glass with LED lights for Gallery FUMI. Carpenters Workshop Gallery will be premiering a chandelier made from natural materials by Spanish designer Nacho Carbonell, whose approach plays with textures and experimental techniques. ‘I like to see objects as living organisms, imagine them coming alive and being able to surprise you with their behaviour,’ explains Carbonell. ‘I want to create objects with my hands; then I can give them my personality. I turn them into communicative objects that can arouse one’s feelings and imagination.’
Eight prestigious high-jewellery galleries will be showcasing pieces at PAD, many centring on the theme of nature. Elie Top will display an unusual emerald crocodile bouclier ring, with rose gold and silver scales and a line of cushion- cut emeralds along its spine. While Indian jewellery designer Neha Dani, known for exploring facets of the natural world through her work, will return to PAD with her majestic Tazlina moonstone necklace, inspired by the translucent shimmer of glaciers she saw on her travels in Alaska.
PAD London is an unmissable opportunity to view works by rising stars of the design world, and discover museum-quality pieces. It is certainly an essential event to add to your calendar this autumn.