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Creating Your Own Art Installation


Art can be expensive and is sadly not always accessible to everyone. However, here at the Kit Kemp Design Studio we believe art should be available to all. We like to be democratic in the way we hang our art, and will often put more distinguished pieces side-by-side with the work of emerging artists. In some cases, we have even created our own art installations, and we must say, we are very proud of them.

This week we have provided a number of tips to help you create your own installations…

Collections play a big role. Displaying objects of the same kind creates a look that is significant and meaningful. Collecting doesn’t need to be fancy or involve significant expense. One installation that we are particularly fond of is at The Croc Bowling Alley at Ham Yard Hotel. We bought vintage bowling shoes on eBay before carefully encasing and displaying them to create a real moment and sense of arrival. I like to think we have given them a very special purpose.

Play with lighting for a striking effect. Inset along one wall in the restaurant at The Whitby Hotel sit forty hand-etched porcelain vessels by Martha Freud. Illuminated from the inside, each pot softly glows with depictions of iconic New York landmark buildings and bridges. It creates a sense of place and purpose, whilst exuding so much peace and beauty.

You will also find some of Martha’s creations in The Potting Shed at Dorset Square Hotel. The illuminations of well-known cricketing remarks are a nod to the hotel’s legacy as the original site of Lord’s Cricket Ground. Why not use it as inspiration and create your own lighting installation?

Create sculptural moments with objects. Styling a console table with everyday objects is another unique way to create your own ‘installation’. Here at Charlotte Street Hotel, we have taken the humble watering can and given it a sense of purpose by pairing them together.

In the lobby at Crosby Street Hotel you are greeted by a playful pack of papier-mâché dogs, who have been covered in the pages of old beano comics. We arranged them around a bench, and together they look like a group and feel integrated into the flow of the space.

At the front of the lobby, a somewhat notorious sculpture by Jaume Plensa proves that well-known art can sit aside more humble pieces.

A simple idea goes a long way. A wonderful source of inspiration has been our beloved artist friend Hermione Skye. She has given life to our ceilings with her colourful woven threads. Her ‘Looms’ create real artistic momentum at the entrances of Ham Yard Hotel and The Whitby Hotel.

Decorate frames with the unexpected. Everyday objects can create an artistic and bespoke feeling: old maps, playing cards, buttons or even a wallpaper can do the trick.

A change of use. We wanted to give a special mention to all those objects that we have converted into something else. Though they are not necessarily a piece of art, they are definitely special and unique. In the library at Ham Yard Hotel, we repurposed an old ladder to turn it into a lamp, and perched on the reception desk at The Whitby Hotel is a colourful beaded parrot that was transformed into a ray of light to welcome weary travellers.

If you have done something similar or you have created a different art installation in your own home we would love to see it. Tag us on Instagram with @kitkempdesignthread and #designthread.

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