We saw a sneak preview of some modern dollhouses designed by currently practicing architects and designers at an event held by Domus during Clerkenwell Design Week. Fast forward to London Design Week and Modus were displaying several of the completed dollhouses in their new showroom in the West End.
The doll houses are going to be sold to raise funds for Kids, the disabled children’s charity. Twenty prominent architects and designers, such as Zaha Hadid Architects, Adjaye Associates, Studio Egret West and Glen Howells, agreed to join this charity event. The specially-set up website for this auction has a full list of the architects.
It is interesting to see the different interpretations made by the same brief. Here are some of the dollhouses I saw:
FAT Architecture in collaboration with artist, Grayson Perry
This design looks imposing on the outside. A careful look, however, reveals lots of cubby holes to open and some gorgeous miniature artwork on the inside.
DRMM with Richard Woods Studio and Grymsdyke Farm
In my opinion, this beautiful design is more of an architectural model than a dollhouse. No child will be able to reach inside to move the people around for pretend play. Yes, I realise these dollhouses will be auctioned for lots of money and will never have grubby little chlld hands touch them. I think, however, any design should maintain the pretence of being a child’s toy.
The finised Elvis doll house from Amodels is even more fantastical than the prototype they showed at Clerkenwell Design Week.
My favourite dollhouse on display was by Make Architects. There was so much interest in this project at Make that their architects made individual cubes that can be slotted together to make different shaped buildings. Called the Jigsaw House, each cube has an activity or a textural interest to engage the child.
Dexter Moran Associates
The Dexter Moran dollhouse was a series of white cubes each with a different sensory experience. For example, one cube had a working doorbell and another had a textured floor. The finishing touches to the dollhouse were being made in the showroom while I was there. Although simple in appearance, the structure had lots of activity areas and was intricate to assemble.
As with many building projects, I couldn’t see many of the finished dollhouses because they were running late! Anyone who has had building work done will agree that meeting deadlines up to wire is a common scenario whether in dollhouses or real houses.
The dollhouses are now available online for preview and early bidding. On November 11th, they will be exhibited and sold in a live auction by Bonhams. Take a look and be amazed by the creativity on display!