WEEK. 10.02.20

Camille Walala builds Lego’s House of Dots

Lego launched its 2D tile concept in London with the help of French designer Camille Walala.

The self-described “purveyor of positivity” created the House of Dots, a five-room installation that reportedly took over 800 hours to build, at Coal Drops Yard in King’s Cross.

Walala’s signature bold colours and geometric patterns can be seen throughout the playful building, which also includes contributions from 180 local children and “a group of passionate adult Lego fans”.

The interactive pop-up is the perfect showcase for Lego Dots, a new range of 2D tiles that encourage people to express their creativity by experimenting with colour and pattern. Over two million tiles were used to ‘dot’ the installation.

Visitors to the house are invited to get involved by making their own patterns and bracelets. And if that gets old, there’s also a slide and ‘disco room’ with a specially curated playlist.

Xbox destinations celebrated by Rough Guides

Rough Guides appears to be preparing for a strange future with a publication dedicated to idyllic travel destinations from Xbox games.

If the world continues to burn and aviation is banned in an attempt save the planet, digital simulation may soon be the only way to satisfy our wanderlust. With that in mind, the travel book specialist is getting out in front with a volume dedicated to the must-visit locations in titles like Anthem, Sea of Thieves and Assassin's Creed Odyssey.

The project was obviously fun to work on, with the evocative language of holidays brochures applied to digital worlds and in-game photography depicting these virtual idylls in all their glory.

Image Sources: Creative Review
Image Sources: Creative Review

It’s an impressive showcase for contemporary game design that also hints at the changing nature of travel. But could virtual holidays actually one day replace your fortnight in Florida or cheeky Benidorm weekender?

Rough Guides seems to think so, claiming that we are now entering “the age of the gaming tourist”. The intro to the book adds: “That thrilling feeling of being somewhere new is no longer the exclusive domain of real-world travel.”

Empirical Spirits goes accessible with RTD launch

Radical distiller Empirical Spirits has launched two new cans in a bid to make its “free-form” creations more accessible.

The ready-to-drink products, known simply as CAN 01 and CAN 02, are priced at €30 for a pack of four.

With a base spirit made from beet molasses and Belgian saison yeast, the former is flavoured with milk oolong tea and gooseberry while the latter is based on notes of sour cherry and walnut wood.

Image Source: the spirits business
Image Source: the spirits business

Empirical was founded in Copenhagen by Lars Williams and Mark Emil Hermansen, alumni of the Danish capital’s ground-breaking restaurant NOMA. The company is well-known for its unorthodox approach to distilling, often choosing to ignore spirit category conventions.

The pack design for these releases, with its minimal printed list of ingredients, is striking too. Although, with brands from RXBar to McDonald’s recently adopting this kind of no-nonsense look to convey confidence, it’s debatable whether the cans achieve the level of Nordic cool they were presumably designed to capture.

Tastecard invites us to solo Valentine’s dinner

This Valentine’s Day, in Shoreditch (where else?), Tastecard is inviting people to go on a date with themselves.

In a move that seems half stigma-busting stunt, half Instagram narcissist’s wet dream, the brand has created a restaurant where diners eat in front of a mirror adorned with motivational quotes.

A mood-boosting playlist will create an atmosphere of “self-love” at the Great Eastern Street eatery, although there is a twist – at the end, diners will be introduced to the person opposite and can then decide if they’d like to take up a two-for-one offer together.

Image Source: tastecard
Image Source: tastecard

With awareness of loneliness as a public health issue on the rise, the idea was reportedly inspired by a Mintel survey that found one in three people regularly eats every meal alone.

“This is a really fun, exciting pop-up that carries a significant message. People need to remember the importance of loving yourself,” explained Matt Turner, founder of Tastecard.


WEEK has been compiled by Alex Theaker, Matt Duxbury and Fabi Burnett.

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