The first London Design Biennale opens today at Somerset House featuring over 30 countries from six continents presenting new works exploring the theme Utopia by Design. The good news is that some of the art is good enough - indeed it's designed - to eat.
1. Buy Syrian sweets
For the French installation, Memories of Syria are collected and shared through le bruit des bonbons — The Astounding Eyes of Syria in a bid to preserve, stir up and share immaterial memories of its living heritage. Visitors are being invited, in a performance, to buy packets of the artist, Loyauté's candy, modelled on an Assyrian idol, from a vending machine. All proceeds will help educate children of displaced families and refugees.
2. Sip coffee in Lebanon
Mezzing In Lebanon brings a slice of Beirut street life to the centre of London. They'll have falafel and coffee stalls, a small lounge cinema, street signs, carts, and even an authentic barber shop. The idea is to transport you to the streets of Beirut.
3. Eat Taiwanese food in a forest
Taiwan's installation, Eatopia, "celebrates diversity in the pursuit of a utopian state" in a forest-like setting. Architect Rain Wu and designer Shikai Tseng have rethought the utopian dining experience with a constructivist menu (one of the dishes is pictured here) designed to explore the creative melting pot of Taiwanese identities. The installation promises to engage all of the visitors' senses, to refresh and provide 'food for thought'. There will be four 35-minute tastings sessions held daily. Tickets cost £10 and must be bought with a ticket to the Biennale.
The London Design Biennale runs from 7-27 September 2016 at Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1L. You can buy tickets on their website at www.londondesignbiennale.com