Food design 2018: Three projects exploring the future of food and culture

Each year the WGSN team visits the design graduation shows across London and the UK, to track rising design directions and explore what they signal about consumer mindsets and lifestyle priorities. This year, food culture was a firm focus across the shows: graduate designers presented new ideas for food products and tableware, as well as proposing new rituals sparked by modern lifestyles.

Here are three stand-out projects that offer food for thought:


Sensorial tableware

Will Fazackerley, a graduate of the joint RCA and Imperial College London course Innovation Design Engineering, has created Nourish, a tableware series that explores “a pleasure-driven approach to eating interactions”. The sensorial collection includes Slurp, a vessel for soup, stew or tea that is inspired by the rounded, aroma-releasing design of a wine glass; and Lick, which is designed for use with foods such as mousses, risotto or ice cream, and actively encourages the sensorial and suggestive behaviour of licking.

Lick by Will Fazackerley

Slurp by Will Fazackerley

Carnal veganism

Desires of the Flesh, by Central Saint Martins Material Futures graduate Cathrine Disney, offers a way to replace the rituals of meat eating in a vegan lifestyle. “As a vegan, how can I morally indulge my insatiable desire for meat?” Disney asks. By providing three replacements (called Skin, Bone and Flesh) for some of the visceral pleasures of eating meat – the mouthfeel, texture or blood, for example – the aim is to help those moving towards plant-based diets to “achieve gratification without the associated guilt and shame” that eating meat now represents for the growing number of flexitarians and reducetarians worldwide. Disney is now developing the project into an immersive dining experience, which will be piloted at the end of August.

Desires of the Flesh by Cathrine Disney

Desires of the Flesh by Cathrine Disney

TV dinners upgraded

Northumbria University Design for Industry graduate Jessica Ellis showed Premium TV Dining, which explores the way in which many of us now eat. According to Ellis’ research, “eight in ten people believe that the television is now a big part of modern meal time”. She designed for this ritual, developing the Melameal dinner tray to “elevate the sofa meal” and add a design-led mentality to this everyday dining experience.

For more insight into this summer’s top graduate projects and emerging design directions, WGSN subscribers can read Materials Innovators: Top 10 Graduates 2018 and Key Ideas: London Design Degree Shows 2018.

Premium TV Dining by Jessica Ellis

Premium TV Dining by Jessica Ellis

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