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RCA graduate Stuart Carey makes wonderfully tactile ceramics that have won many awards, including recognition from Homes & Gardens and Elle Decoration, and he visited Focus/16 to give a fascinating talk on his work. “You never stop learning, and once you realise that, you’re open to developing [your work] a lot quicker and easier,” he said. His words couldn’t be more apt: throughout the week, the Design Hub was packed with visitors eager to learn from a series of experts at the top of their game. Other sessions included a masterclass on framing and lighting art, with specialists TM Lighting and John Jones, and an exploration of creativity with paint, courtesy of interior designer and founder of Konig Colours, Vanessa Galloway. Truly immersive events, the talks and demonstrations left everyone feeling creatively inspired.

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The design traditions of Central and South America may not be so well known here as, say, India or China, but a few trailblazers are starting to bring these regions’ exceptional craftsmanship to our attention. For example, this intricately carved, mid-century inspired ‘Villiers’ armoire is the work of Alfonso Marina, a Mexican manufacturer that Nicholas Haslam Ltd is now exclusively representing. Intriguingly, the armoire holds a secret: an interior that’s painted bright red.

Nicholas Haslam Ltd, Second Floor, South Dome

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Creative collaborations abound at the Design Centre. Recently, design houses have linked up with world-renowned architects to create new and innovative furniture. A good example is Flexform’s ‘Adagio’ sofa by Daniel Libeskind, which perfectly combines the architect’s philosophy of forceful, iconic forms with the idea of sober elegance. Characterised by unusual angles and Italian craftsmanship, its sloping upholstered back is high and inclined, while the cushions and seats are asymmetrical in form. The look is similar to the aesthetic found in his international architectural and urban design projects. “It brings together a synergy of architectural form and everyday comfort,”Libeskind says of the piece.

Flexform, Ground Floor, South Dome