Benchmark Furniture co-founder and design icon Sir Terence Conran has teamed up with the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) for this year's London Design Festival, tasking a crop of creative luminaries to whip up their ultimate design wish list, which will be unveiled at the V&A on Saturday.
The project first began when Conran pitched this question to friends: ‘What have you always wanted in your home, but never been able to find?’ Of course, the Design Museum-founder counts some of the design and architecture world’s starriest names amongst his acquaintances. These top minds have taken a host of up-and-coming names under their wings to realise products for ‘The Wish List’, all crafted from American hardwood.
Alex de Rijke tasked Barnby & Day with creating a dining table; Norman Foster challenged Norie Matsumoto to create the perfect pencil sharpener; Allen Jones wished for a chaise longue by Lola Lely; and Zaha Hadid asked Gareth Neal to condense his furniture design vision into tableware. Meanwhile, John Pawson turned to sister duo Gwendolyn and Guillane Kerschbaumer of design studio Areti to concoct a trio of items: a triangular shelf, slanted door and a hook.
The resulting objects will be displayed on the V&A's Architecture Gallery landing and the staircase leading up to it from the Grand Entrance. Meanwhile, Sir Paul Smith's most wished for item – a shed designed by Nathalie de Leval – will be on show in the V&A’s John Madejski Garden.