Get In Touch

William Morris Design Line

The new William Morris Design Line was a local community-focused design route through the streets of Walthamstow. Inspired by Morris’s statement art made by the people and for the people’, this first year focused on the local community coming together to celebrate creativity, resilience and inspire future young creatives. 

2020 ROUTE HIGHLIGHTS

Design Themes

This unique design route used ‘local’ street art as a ‘social fabric’ connecting areas, creative organisations and partners together with new design collaborations and interventions. William Morris’s design principles of community, unity, simplicity and craft provided the core themes connecting different art, design and activities enroute. Each design theme and intervention wove a creative journey through the area, taking people along the main roads of Wood Street, down the Forest Road up to Blackhorse Road. 

Route Highlights

A sense of community underpinned Morris’s Arts and Crafts movement and many of his designs were made collaboratively across different creative disciplines. The route began by introducing a series of street based art and design along the line from Wood Street Walls

The unity of the arts was also a central tenet of the movement and influenced the future of 20th Century and contemporary design. Working with future designers and students from Waltham Forest College and the artist/designer, Fandangoe Kid the design line ran design workshops exploring themes of unity and design activism, resulting in an exciting new piece of public design on the steps of Walthamstow College. 

Morris' interpretation of simplicity revealed a vision of a pared-down aesthetic, anticipating modernism’s move towards authentic materials and minimal design. One of the design lines local exhibits, opened a window into the history of design and reveals the connection between the history of craft and key 20th Century furniture design through the everyday object, the Chair. 

Morris’s designs were based around a strong sense of craftsmanship, with simplicity of form, truth to materials and fitness for purpose. For Morris, craft was also political and a form of resistance to mass production and manufacturing. Together with Blackhorse Workshop, Extinction Rebellion design group and industrial designer Liang-Jung Chen, the design line hosted a series of workshops and talks exploring design as a form of activism, open-source design and repurposing hardware to create a new form of design culture for the future.  

William Morris Design Line is produced as part of Urban by Nature, a creative programme from lead partners William Morris Big Local and Wood Street Walls, supported by Creative Civic Change which uses the arts and creativity to create meaningful civic change. 

See partners for further details.

The Program

Craft

Morris’s designs were based on a strong sense of craftsmanship, truth to materials and fitness for purpose. For Morris, craft was also political and a form of resistance to mass production. 

EVENT/TALK: EXTINCTION REBELLION: XR ACTIVISM & OPEN-SOURCE 

Together with the Extinction Rebellion Art Group the design line explored the connection between William Morris community and craft based principles, current community activism and open-source design. 

WHERE: Blackhorse Workshop, 1-2 Sutherland Road, Path, London E17 6BX
WHEN: Saturday 12th September 2020, 7-8.30pm
TICKETED EVENT: £5 per ticket via Eventbrite

 

BLACKHORSE RESPONDERS & EXTINCTION REBELLION: WHAT IS DESIGN ACTIVISM?

 

Blackhorse Responders and the XR Art & Design Group workshop design as a form of activism. 

WHERE: Blackhorse Workshop, 1-2 Sutherland Road, Path, London E17 6BX
WHEN: Wednesday 16th September 2020, 4.30-7pm 

BLACKHORSE WORKSHOP & LIANG-JUNG CHEN: MISUSE WORKSHOP

Blackhorse Workshop hosted The Misused a unique day-long workshop with industrial designer Liang-Jung Chen, where you could creatively repurpose hardware to create a new form of design. With one day workshop, participants experienced the whole design process, which included: introduction to the design approach, hardware selection, idea brainstorming and design, and making. 

WHERE: Blackhorse Workshop, 1-2 Sutherland Road, Path, London E17 6BX
WHEN: Sunday 13th September, 10am-6pm
TICKETED EVENT: Full day workshop, 10 places. Price £120 via Eventbrite

NB: Please see more detailed information on Blackhorse Workshop course pages here.
Liang-Jung Chen is also exhibiting as part of LDF20 in Coal Drop’s Yard. See details here.

Unity

The unity of the arts was also a central tenet of the movement and influenced the future of 20th Century and contemporary design.

INSTALLATION: FANDANGOE KID & WALTHAM FOREST COLLEGE STUDENTS

The artist & designer Fandangoe Kid collaborated with a group of creative students from Waltham Forest College to explore themes of unity, change and design as a form of activism.

See more work and inspiration from Fandangoe Kid’s Instagram

WHERE: Waltham Forest College, 707 Forest Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 4JB
WHEN: College opening hours, Monday-Friday 9am-6pm
NB: Also visible from the street route route throughout the festival on weekends

RENDEZVOUS PROJECTS: SWEET HARMONY

Rendezvous Projects showed Sweet Harmony: Radio, Rave & Waltham Forest, 1989-1994.  At Armstrong Audio, designer Claudia Schenk displayed a series of limited edition risograph prints created as flyers for Sweet Harmony based around the original rave flyers and zines. At Signature Brewery, a mixture of archive rave flyers and zines, all produced in Waltham Forest, and collected as part of the Sweet Harmony project archive, were exhibited. 

Rendezvous Projects is a Community Interest Company based in Waltham Forest, working on creative projects which engage with the social history of places.
@rendezvousprojects

WHERE: Armstrong Audio, 32a Blackhorse Ln, Walthamstow, London E17 6HJ
Signature Brewery, Unit 15, Uplands Business Park, Blackhorse Lane, London E17 5QJ
WHEN: Exhibitions now closed. 

Community

A sense of community underpinned Morris’s Arts and Crafts movement and many of his designs were made collaboratively across different creative disciplines. 

WOOD STREET WALLS: STREET BASED ART & DESIGN

The route begins by introducing a series of street based art and design based murals along the line from Wood Street Walls.

WHERE: See route map

WOOD STREET STUDIOS: FAMILY & CHILDREN’S GRAPHIC DESIGN WORKSHOP

Family graphic design workshop.

WHERE: Wood Street Studios, 1 Barrett Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 3FU
WHEN: Sunday 13th September 2020, 11am-1pm

COMMUNITY STREETS @ YONDER

WHERE: Yonder
WHEN: Saturday 12th Sept. Late night.

MINI-MORRIS FAMILY TREASURE HUNT

You could take the family and search the William Morris design line areas for hidden Morris treasures.

WHERE: collect the special Mini-Morris treasure map from one of our key locations

MINI-MORRIS 3D PRINT EXHIBITION 

Come and see hundreds of 3d printed and cast Mini-Morris plaster sculptures painted by children throughout the borough during Covid19 lockdown 2020. A William Morris Big Local, Urban By Nature community initiative by Sean Rodrigo to facilitate community creativity during lockdown and connect children with William Morris #minimorrisproject.

WHERE: William Morris Gallery, Discovery Room
WHEN: See opening time and book entry

COOPER COLLECTIVE: BE MORE OCTOPUS

Cooper Collective explored the importance of sustainability in the creative industry by presenting their project the Sky Ocean Rescue Café - the first cafe in the UK to be created from ocean sourced and sustainable materials.

The covid-secure exhibit hosted at Frank Ison Space, a beautifully restored Victorian Ironmongery in the heart of Walthamstow Village, immersed visitors in an experience that provides insight into how the café was created, the methods used in its design and introducing production partners, Beautiful Wonder, who share Cooper's passion for working sustainably.

WHERE: Frank Ison Space, 47 Orford Road, E17 9NJ
WHEN: 12th - 15th September 2020, 5-7.30pm
FREE EVENT - learn more here

Simplicity 

Morris' interpretation of simplicity revealed a vision of a pared-down aesthetic, anticipating modernism’s move towards authentic materials and minimal design.

EXHIBIT/ INSTALLATION: ARTS & CRAFTS TO 20TH CENTURY DESIGN: LUCIAN ERCOLANI 

William Morris Design Line opened a window into the history of design to reveal the connection between Morris’s craft, the history of Walthamstow and 20th Century designer Lucian Ercolani through the everyday object, the Chair. 

WHERE: Salvation Army Window Display, 434 Forest Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 4PY
WHEN: Visible from street route throughout the festival

WORKSHOP: USEFUL & BEAUTIFUL

Walthamstow based artist Vasu Sellamuthu designed a narrative work around the theme of home. It featured original poetry and creative writing by local residents, bringing together diverse reflections on being at home during and after lockdown. 

Visitors could participate in a free design and creative writing session and see the inspiration behind the project. 

WHERE: Yonder, 6 Hooker's Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 6DP
WHEN: 12th September, afternoon - drop by

WHERE: Locus, 1 Chingford Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 4PW
WHEN: 13th September 2020, workshop at 12noon & 3pm
TICKETS: Free event. Register via Eventbrite

EAT, DRINK & MORE EN ROUTE

Eggs & Bread
191 Wood St, Walthamstow, London E17 3NU

Wynwood District Cafe
2A Chingford Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 4PJ

Blackhorse Workshop Cafe
Blackhorse Workshop 1-2 Sutherland Rd Path, London E17 6BX

Armstrong Audio & Coffee Shop 
32a Blackhorse Ln, Walthamstow, London E17 6HJ

Yonder, Climb & Coffee
6 Hooker's Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 6DP

Exale Brewery
Unit 2C uplands business park, London E17 5QJ