Around & about

Paddington Central Design Route Highlights


At Paddington Central we are thrilled to announce our participation in London Design Festival 2018, taking place from 15–23 September. Supported by British Land, both as headline partner and through their Celebration of Design Medals, this annual event champions and promotes London as the design capital of the world.

Our art curator, Rosie Glenn, took a behind-the-scenes look at plans for the inaugural Paddington Central Design Route. Here’s her run down of what not to miss.

Colour Transfer by Liz West at Paddington Central, commissioned by British Land; image courtesy Liz West; photograph © Jason Bailey Studio

Firstly, if you haven’t already made it over to the Westway Viaduct side of Paddington Central, the Design Route provides the perfect excuse to experience the immersive environment created by Liz West’s Colour Transfer. As part of our LDF 2018 celebrations, plans are underway to present Liz’s large-scale model for the piece, this will give a great insight into the creative process and the relationship between the artist and commissioner, something I will be exploring further during my Walking Tours of the Design Route. In addition, I’m really looking forward to welcoming Liz back to Paddington Central to participate in colour-themed workshops and talks; there should be something for everyone in these sessions, giving a real chance for inner creativity to emerge!

Also, as part of the Design Route, the Royal College of Arts will be presenting residential and retail builds of the future. Having spent time with the students involved, I’m keen to view their realised pieces and designs, which will be located within Sheldon Square and across Paddington Central.

The Paddington Central Flip Book Garden © Studio Appétit

Other upcoming highlights for me include the two literary-inspired presentations in the form of the Snøhetta Book Pavilion located inside 2 Kingdom Street and Ido Garini’s canalside Flip-book Urban Oasis. Both innovative installations will provide immersive experiences for viewers to explore, interact and reflect; the former through its rotating structure which will flip to reveal a variety of diverse book-themed spaces, the latter as it mimics the sensation of a colourful pop-up book which flips from page to page throughout the day. Appealing to wide sections of the community, these bespoke structures capture not only the design-led ambitions of the campus, but also Paddington’s Central’s neighbourhood spirit, something I’m proud to see evolve further as I’m out and about.

Message from the Unseen World by UVA and Nick Drake

Of course, during my visit to Paddington Central, I will be sure to take another look at Message from the Unseen World, the Alan Turing inspired installation located under Bishops Bridge. This innovative artwork by United Visual Artists is based on a poem by Nick Drake, the words of which are printed on the adjacent plaque.

Sir Peter Blake RA with the Darcie Green barge

Lastly, I can’t wait to see Sir Peter Blake’s Darcie & May Green again. The barges are resplendent in their graphic designs of Blake’s inimitable pop iconography, a real treat for the eyes and the perfect location to meet for refreshments and an exchange of creative ideas after taking in this new Design Route.

If you're inspired by this, why not join Rosie Glenn on an exclusive walking tour of our Design Route? For more information, please click here.