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Meet the designers doing good this autumn in London

More than 400 events and installations from high-profile designers and rising stars were included in this year’s London Design Festival, while the city’s inaugural design biennale showcased the works of 37 countries at Somerset House

The Closer We Get, 2015. Karen Guthrie and her mother, Ann.
The film-maker talks about her incredibly successful and amazingly raw and personal documentary of her family history, The Closer We Get.
William Kentridge. The Refusal of Time, with collaboration of Philip Miller, Catherine Meyburgh and Peter Galison. Film still, 2012, 5-channel video projection, colour, sound, megaphones, breathing machine, 30 min. Courtesy William Kentridge, Marian Goodman Gallery, Goodman Gallery and Lia Rumma Gallery.
This remarkable show offers six of the South African artist’s most potent installations – and six chances to enter Kentridge’s shivering monochrome universe.
Performance conducted by artist Tianzhuo Chen at Palais de Tokyo, Paris, 24 June 2015 - 13 September 2015.
Kotwall, a senior member of the K11 Art Foundation, talks about the ethos and goals of the organisation, which seeks to promote young Chinese artists, open up cross-cultural dialogues, and make art more accessible to the Chinese public.
Peter Cain. Prelude #3, 1990. Oil on canvas, 85 x 48 in (216 x 122 cm). © Peter Cain, courtesy Matthew Marks Gallery.
This retrospective exhibition displays Cain’s huge, forensic paintings of cars, strangely truncated yet irresistibly seductive.
Conrad Shawcross’s largest-scale project to date, the Optic Cloak, 49 metres tall, 20 metres wide and three metres deep, Greenwich Peninsula, south-east London. Photograph: Martin Kennedy.
The artist explains his use of the moiré effect in designing an optical cloak for a tall industrial building on the Greenwich Peninsula in south-east London.
Fluxland sailing on the river Thames, London, 21 September 2016. Photograph: Luke Blackett.
The French artist has converted a grain barge into an artwork to sail the Thames, blasting out a soundtrack of revolution and hosting conferences with leading thinkers on philosophy, economics and nanotechnology. He welcomed Studio International on board.
Jeffrey Gibson. Horizon, 2016. Acrylic on canvas, 84 x 95 x 1.5 in.
The artist talks about being any angry young artist, his earlier determination not to be viewed as an American Indian artist, and the practice he has evolved over the years, which combines traditional Native American art with contemporary styles.
Li Huasheng. 0831, 2008. Ink on paper, 38 1/8 x 71 in (97 x 180.5 cm). Image courtesy Mayor Gallery.
The Chinese artist is admired for his abstract ink paintings. Here, he explains how a visit to the US changed his art and his life, and why he has ‘stopped communicating with most people’.
Judith Wechsler. Aby Warburg: Metamorphosis and Memory, 2016 (film still). 60 min.
The American film-maker and art historian discusses her remarkable body of documentaries on art, including her latest project, a suggestively melancholy portrait of Aby Warburg.
Florence Dwyer, Katie Schwab, Simon Worthington, Making the Bed, Laying the Table, Glasgow
Sculpture Studios, 2016. Photograph: Max Slaven.
Keen to learn traditional, craft-based skills, the artist explains why she is drawn to processes where she has a direct hand in production, staying in contact with the things she is making and the people she is working with.
Yoshimasa Tsuchiya. Tabby, 2015. Camphor wood, borosilicate glass, polychrome.
To celebrate its 90th birthday, the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum is staging an exhibition of works in wood, from vast installations to finely chiselled pieces, by five contemporary Japanese artists  .
Ed Moses. Untitled, 1975-77. Acrylic and masking tape on Strathmore Board, 61 x 41 1/2 in (framed) (154.9 x 105.4 cm). Image courtesy Albertz Benda.
In the still eye of the swirl of the happening art that opens Manhattan’s autumn season stands a small, beautiful and defining exhibition that makes a case for process as mantra, manifesto and trophy.
Portrait of Guan Xiao, courtesy of the artist.
The artist talks about how the digital revolution has influenced her work, the roles of text and humour, and her dislike of being labelled.
Flatbread Society Boat Oven 1, 2013. Photograph: Max McClure.
The artist talks about her upbringing in the breadbasket of America, and how this taught her about the interplay of power and politics and the importance of farming and our environment.
Jess Johnson. Flesh Dozer, 2016. Pen, fibre tipped markers and gouache on paper, 38.5 x 28 cm. Courtesy the artist.
The fantastical world of Jess Johnson has arrived in Edinburgh, in the artist’s first solo exhibition in Europe. She talks about translating her intensely detailed drawings into virtual reality.
To the Forest! The Forest’s information center. Yuta Nakajima & Nankitsu Danchi.
Eight projects explore how art and expressing ideas and emotions can help those on the fringes of society, with the aim of bringing art to those who often find it inaccessible.
Marten Lange. Citizen 5, 2015.
The photographer talks about his lifelong fascination with prehistory and his latest photobook, Chicxulub, and the difficulties of capturing lost worlds.
Megan Rooney. Papier-mâché head of a goddess, Animals on the bed, Seventeen, 2016. Photograph: Damian Griffiths.
The artist talks about working with clay, birdseed, lipstick and papier-mache and about excess, draught snakes and the domestic sublime.
Regine Bartsch. Time Frames, 2016. Paper, canvas, thread, ink and graphite, 180 x 130 cm. Photograph: Alan Landers.
In her studio in southern Ireland, the German-born artist spoke about her recent exhibition and residency at David Parr House in Cambridge, Buddhism and the childhood experiences in Finland and Syria that continue to influence her practice.
Snøhetta expansion of the new SFMOMA, 2016. Photograph: © Henrik Kam, courtesy SFMOMA.
With Snøhetta’s new building now open, SFMOMA has more exhibition space than Manhattan’s MoMA, and more dedicated walls for photography than the Getty, and with its vast collection, it is an essential destination for any art lover.
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