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  Discover South Kensington  
The home of science, arts and inspiration

London Design Festival & Open House Festival in South Ken

With the arrival of the Autumn, brings an exciting season of Festivals and exciting exhibitions to South Kensington which we look forward to sharing with you over the coming months.

The London Design Festival returns with the V&A providing the official Festival Hub presenting a range of thought-provoking contemporary installations, workshops, events, talks and more, exploring the transformative potential of design and the role of designers as choreographers of change.

There is also an exciting programme of temporary exhibitions and events across the Brompton Design District - including 11 exhibitions from meditative Korean ceramics to full-scale, immersive light installations at Cromwell Place.

Open House Festival also returns with a number of South Ken venues opening their doors including the Ismaili Centre, Institut français and Cromwell Place.

Win 2 tickets to see Weird Sensation Feels Good- The World of ASMR
Design Museum Kensington
Closes 22 Sept
Win a pair of tickets to visit 'WEIRD SENSATION FEELS GOOD: The World of ASMR' at the Design Museum. This is the first exhibition of its kind to lift the world of ASMR out from your screen and into physical space and is now on until 10th April 2023
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  What's on  
London Design Festival 2022
17 - 25 Sept 10-5.45 Daily (10pm Fridays)
London Design Festival returns to the V&A as the official Festival Hub & its iconic spaces will be transformed by an extraordinary collection of specially commissioned installations & displays by contemporary designers from across the globe. This year's theme is centered around 'transformation'.
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Digital Design Weekend
24 - 25 Sept 10.30 - 5pm
Digital Design Weekend returns to take over the V&A, with interactive installations, showcases, workshops, talks and family-friendly activities taking place around the museum. Events are free and drop-in, but places for some are limited.
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Brompton Design District
Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea
15th - 25th Sept Varies
During the annual London Design Festival, Brompton plays host to a series of exhibitions and events discovered in shops, showrooms, galleries and institutions, and a curated programme by Jane Withers Studio within the District championing experimental design.
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The Living Sea, Fragile Beauty
Ismaili Centre
On til 24 Sept Varies
The Living Sea celebrates the beauty and magic of the ocean, testifying to some of the most enthralling and surprising encounters the photographer has experienced under the surface. Free, drop-in.
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Generation Hope: Act for the Planet
Natural History Museum
12 - 16 Sept 12 - 8pm
Join a free programme of inspiring workshops, panels & talks created for young people aged 16+. Whether it's getting to grips with the science, understanding the impacts of the planetary emergency, or strengthening your own skills, come & take the next steps. Booking tickets is essential.
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Hallyu! The Korean Wave
24 Sep - 25 June 2023 Daily: 10am-5:45pm - Friday: 10am–10pm
Hallyu! The Korean Wave will showcase the colourful and dynamic popular culture of South Korea, exploring the makings of the Korean Wave and its global impact on the creative industries of cinema, drama, music, fandom, beauty and fashion.
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Park Nights 2022
24th June - 13th Oct 8pm
Each year, Park Nights presents a series of new performance commissions conceived in response to the Serpentine's annual architectural commission, the Serpentine Pavilion which offers audiences unique ways to experience architecture and performance.
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Mrs Harris Goes to Paris
Institut français
21 Sept, 30 Sept - 5 Oct TImes vary
Based on Paul Gallico’s novel, the film follows Ada Harris (Lesley Manville), a widowed cleaning lady who falls in love with a Dior couture dress and decides to travel to Paris to purchase one of her own. Special Preview on 21 Sept at 7.30pm followed by a Q&A with director Anthony Fabian & members of the cast
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60 Years of Bond
Royal Albert Hall
4 Oct, 17-20 Nov 2022 1.30pm, 2pm, 7.30pm
Celebrate 60 years of James Bond at the Royal Albert Hall. This autumn celebrates the music of Bond, headlined by the legendary Dame Shirley Bassey. and Daniel Craig who return to the big screen as 007 in a triple bill of Casino Royale in Concert, Skyfall in Concert and Spectre in Concert.
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Spotlight on Isabelle Huppert
Institut français
Sept - Nov Varies
A retrospective of one of cinema’s greatest actresses, Isabelle Huppert. Whether on stage or in front of the camera, she has never shied away from challenging protagonists and always delivers remarkable performances; rightly resulting in an international, multi-awarded and incredibly prolific career.
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Open House Festival - The Ismaili Centre
The Ismaili Centre
18th Sept 10am - 4pm (last tour 3pm)
The Ismaili Centre is participating in the Open House Festival on Sunday 18th September, offering tours of the building and roof garden. Doors 10am - 4pm (last tour at 3pm). Entry is Free. More details to follow.
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V&A Academy
V&A South Kensington
Summer 2023
With V&A Academy, bring the richness and rigour of the museum into your home with online courses and practical workshops, or study in-person in at V&A South Kensington. Learn from world-leading experts with V&A Academy this summer – last chance to book.
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Exploring Our Oceans: The Challenger Expedition and its Legacy
Natural History Museum
On til Jan 23 Daily
This free display of historic and contemporary images and specimens marks the 150th anniversary of the Challenger expedition - a ground-breaking scientific endeavour to sail around the world and systematically study the oceans for the very first time.
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Talking Culture #10: How we wanted to live
Imagine life beyond crises. A world beyond catastrophe, wars & climate crisis. How would you like to live? In this podcast, the Goethe-Institut talks to curator & project developer Isabel Raabe of Talking Objects Lab & curator & dance dramaturg Thomas Schaupp.
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  And from our friends  
Open House Festival
Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea
8th - 21st Sept Varies
Open House Festival returns this month for a two-week celebration of London featuring amazing events, tours and open days of special buildings across all 33 London boroughs. This year, our South Ken venues opening their doors include the Ismaili Centre, Institut français and Cromwell Place.
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  Discover more  
Feature your event as part of K&C Culture Night 2022
Kensington & Chelsea
7th October

K&C Culture Night celebrates outstanding arts and creativity across Kensington and Chelsea. Taking place on one evening, this year on Friday 7 October, it shines a spotlight on bold and exciting projects happening in the borough.

If you have organisd or are planning a cultural activity or event, online or in-person, that takes place in the borough anytime on Friday 7 October, please get in touch with the Culture Service at Culture@rbkc.gov.uk before Friday 23 September. Events can be free or ticketed, take place in the day or night, and feature any art form or cultural activity.

Creative Consultation - Emslie Horniman Pleasance Mural
7th & 14th September

As part of our ongoing initiative dedicated to bringing great art and creative flare to unusual sites across the borough, KCAW have partnered with Kensington and Chelsea Council to run a series of community workshops to help with the creation of a mural on the wall of the newly refurbished Emslie Horniman Pleasance playground.

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Discover South Kensington is an initiative of the Exhibition Road Cultural Group, a partnership of the cultural and educational organisations in and around Exhibition Road, South Kensington.

Our partners include:
The Design Museum
Imperial College London
Institut franҫais
The Ismaili Centre
Kensington Palace
Natural History Museum
Royal Albert Hall
South Kensington Estates
Royal College of Art
Cromwell Place
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Royal College of Music
Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851
Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)
The Royal Parks
Serpentine Galleries
The Science Museum
V&A South Kensington
The Royal Society of Sculptors
Japan House
Westminster City Council
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