Fans of the London-based design duo, known separately as Ben Langlands and Nikki Bell, may have recognised their handiwork on our very own limited edition cover W* 093, and we're thrilled to announce that the masters of multidisciplinary media are chanelling their expertise on judging the winners of this year’s Design Awards.
Having met at Middlesex Polytechnic during the late Seventies, Langlands & Bell explore a variety of media in their work, from sculpture and digital projects to full-scale architectural design.
In 2002 Langlands and Bell were appointed as the official British War Artists for the invasion of Afghanistan, and their resulting work, ‘The House of Osama bin Laden’, was later short listed for the Turner Prize. Exploring the ubiquitous nature of the NGOs operating in Afghanistan, the computer-animated piece followed their expedition to an eerily isolated house, once occupied by Osama bin Laden, highlighting the stark realities of war.
Langlands and Bell’s political bent was more recently evident in their ‘A Muse Um’ exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery, London. By taking acronyms from museums from around the world, the images are repeated in a cycle to imbue them with a sense of soulless corporate homogeneity.
Intelligent, weighty but ultimately impartial, each of the duo’s work is characterized by a poignant ambiguity that allows the viewer generous space in which to explore complex themes and political agendas.
Click here to read our exclusive q+a with Langlands & Bell to see how they found the judging experience.