Covent Garden Super Design | icon 054 | December 2007

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Words Anna Bates

Covent Garden Super Design was a new five-day event that ran concurrently with Frieze Art Fair in October, showing work by Zaha Hadid, Arik Levy, Tom Dixon and Studio Job, among others.

Hosted by Greenwich Village Gallery, the show took over three floors of a Covent Garden mansion house and attracted the art crowd in town for Frieze. “The art world has been really reluctant to accept design,” says gallery co-founder Pascal Dowers. “They’ve been trying to ignore it. But now they’ve started to understand what it is we do.”

The gallery commissioned Tom Dixon to tweak the design for his trademark welded Pylon chair, which he presented in a cage along with a large table based on the same concept. Studio Job was also commissioned to design furniture, adorned with its new Industrialised pattern.

Two other London-based galleries, The Apartment and Kenny Schachter Rove Projects, were invited to take part. The Apartment’s space was tucked in the far corner of the first floor, where former Zaha Hadid designer Philip Michael Wolfson presented a collection of origami-inspired furniture made of painted, bent and welded aluminium, specially commissioned for the event. Hadid’s Belu desk graced the entrance hall downstairs.

Arik Levy took up a generous chunk of Rove Projects’ space, showing old and new projects including his Rock Fusion and Rock Mirror collections. But it was Fractal Cloud – the 2005 light piece recalling the rapid movement of a sparkler – that stole the show.

“We wanted to do an art presentation of design,” says Dowers. “We’re not keen on fairs – you can’t present design in a small space. Design has to be put in context.”

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