Bench Years by Various Designers

V&A Project

14 — 23 Sept 2012

Interiors & Furniture, Urban Design

Victoria & Albert Museum

Cromwell Road



London Design Festival collaborated with the British Furniture and lighting producer Established & Sons to create a series of one-off benches located in the John Madejski Garden at the V&A.

This series of one-off benches was created to mark ten years of the Festival. Each one was made from a different material and designed by a different designer. This family of benches was exhibited collectively in the Italianate surroundings of the John Madejski Garden at the centre of the V&A. Within a city, the bench is a recurring component of urban furniture, yet its design is often subject to so many limitations to do with size, durability and vandalism. The Bench Years project aimed to free designers of such limitations, instead giving them a particular material to focus on. Working with individual material suppliers, 10 designers aimed to exploit and accentuate the inherent attributes of their chosen material. The resulting family of benches explored the versatility of the materials and challenged visitors' assumptions of the humble bench.