Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Food for thought

On to New Designers part 2, covering the likes of product design, furniture, graphic design, illustration and architecture, with exhibits from students throughout the UK.

There was so much talent out there and some really creative and original ideas were in evidence. I was totally overawed. I've chosen to give a snapshot of a few of the things that were curiously amusing - with the serious message that new designers are often young graduates - who, whilst hoping to be iconic designers of the future, are only at the beginning of a long journey.

This blog is mainly about what goes into our stomachs, because food simply has to be on all our plates every day and it's big in the press too, which seems to count for everything these days - so you're probably best blaming them rather than the government for food price inflation - and for inspiring so many food-related ideas at New Designers.

Perhaps even Gordon Brown, a man with a certain amount of experience, who gave the opening speech at New Designers last year, could learn a thing or two from this educational designer plate for bulimics (above right). Waste not, want not!

Whilst Gordon masticates on corn stuffed with caviar, kelp-flavoured cold Kyoto beef and diced fatty flesh of tuna (let alone the next five courses, no wonder he looks a bit sickly), ShopCurious considers what's potentially on offer to the rest of us from new designers who will be shaping the way we eat tomorrow:

Zeke Abry from Leeds Metropolitan University has come up with the idea for a kitchen-based 'information centre' designed to promote healthy eating, with calorie consumption and dietary advice, plus help with creating shopping lists (in conjunction with major supermarkets of course) and handy tips for meal preparation.

What I really liked about this idea was the ability to film your (excuse the Americanism) 'mom's home-cooking' for posterity and keep it on your information centre - I do hope he thinks up a better name for this. What's more this device also doubles up as a baby, or perhaps an emo monitor in the meantime (right). There's multi-tasking for you. Is this a man vs. women thing or what? Girls, I suggest you start growing herbs out of your purpose built kitchen table immediately: Adele Bird, left, has created the very thing.

Our curiously corpulent future (dismissing any possibility of global recession, food shortages and mass starvation) sparked the imagination of a number of designers and one design that caught my eye was Nicholas Morris's rather prettily designed hydro cycle (left), the base of which is half filled with water. It's rather like a modern version of the pedalo, which could be used in swimming pools and lakes to kick start kids into action, if they're not too busy sharpening their knives. And those were also on display.

Though these unusual designer cactus knives by Andrew Seward (above and left) at least have a sense of humour. As do the designer beer mats by Jamie Wood (right and below left).

If all else fails, one could always live on beer. A popular favourite with everyone from young graduates and new designers to Gordon Brown alike.

Will you?

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