The exhibition Finnovations at Europe House 12 Star Gallery in London’s Smith Square celebrates, from April 16 to May 2 2014, the work of two leading Finnish shoe designers: Julia Lundsten and Aki Choklat.
The exhibition compares and contrasts the two designers’ visions. They share Nordic inspiration, nomadic spirit and a love of uncompromising design. Both graduated from London Royal College of Art and run their own successful footwear labels, but while Julia Lunsten’s celebrates female power, Aki Choklat’s menswear collection subtly explores feminine attributes. The designers innovating approaches warranted the exhibition’s title: “Finnovations.”
Two years running Julia Lundsten won the prestigious Manolo Blahnik Award. She was also nominated for The Finnish Young Designer of the Year and Elle Accessories Designer of the Year. Her designs combine avant-garde style and wearability. She launched her high-end footwear label, FINSK, in 2004 and for Autumn 2013, with Finnish boot maker Nokian Footwear, launched a range of innovative rubber boots for women: Nokian Footwear by Julia Lundsten.
Aki Choklat is a busy man with multiple talents. In addition to running his eponymous footwear label, he works as a trend and design consultant. He has taught at London College of Fashion and Fashion Institute of Technology, and now lectures at Polimoda in Florence. In 2012 he published (with Laurence King Publishing) “Footwear Design” – a guide to the skills and the trade of shoe design.
12 Star Gallery, Europe House, 32 Smith Square, London SW1P 3EU
Monday to Friday from 10am-6pm.