5/06/2019 : Isokon Bauhaus Estonian Plywood Helped Shape Modern Britain

Isokon and the Bauhaus – how Estonian plywood helped shape modern Britain

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Tel 2019-06-05
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Isokon Bauhaus Estonian Plywood Helped Shape Modern Britain

The Estonian Embassy in London is excited to invite you to a special event as part of the London Festival of Architecture, for 2019 themed Boundaries. Wednesday, 5th June 6:30 - 8:30pm Embassy of Estonia in London44 Queen’s Gate Terrace, London SW7 5PJ Free entry upon registration Limited seatingPlease bring photo ID  Authors Leyla Daybelge and Magnus Englund talk about their new book Isokon and the Bauhaus in Britain (Batsford, 2019). This illustrated talk will cover the story of the groundbreaking Isokon building, its artistic network and the legacy of Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer and László Moholy-Nagy, the Bauhaus professors who lived there during the 1930s. Built in 1934, the Grade I listed Isokon building on Lawn Road in Hampstead was Britain’s first modernist apartment building.

Constructed from reinforced concrete, the flats were filled with the latest plywood furniture, and were hugely influential in pioneering the concept of minimal living. The Isokon flats, bar and dining club would become an extraordinary creative nexus for a network of international artists, writers, politicians, architects, designers and even spies. Central to the story is the modernist furniture collection that Isokon founder Jack Pritchard created with the Bauhaus masters, manufactured at the vast A M Luther factory in Tallinn, Estonia through its British subsidiary Venesta. Estonian plywood played a key part in the development of British modernist architecture and design. Leyla Daybelge is a journalist and broadcaster, with a background in news and current affairs, as a newscaster, correspondent and producer for BBC Radio Four, ITN, ITV News and Sky News.
She currently writes travel and culture features for the Daily Telegraph amongst others. She was previously Head of Press for Contemporary and Design at Sotheby’s. Magnus Englund is the former resident of Pritchard’s penthouse in the Isokon building. He has championed the building’s revival and is a trustee of the Isokon Gallery. He is the co-founder of the popular interior design company, Skandium and the author of several books about design. The event is co-produced by Embassy of Estonia, the Isokon Gallery Trust and Batsford. Special guest: Dr Yael Reisner (Yael Reisner Studio), head-curator of the Tallinn Architecture Biennale 2019, who will unveil this year’s program.

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