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Mint Shop: "When Things Bloom"
Kensington's discerning design shop celebrates spring with a special curated collection
by Kat Herriman
on 22 May 2013
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If you're exploring London's Kensington area this week to check out what's on offer at Chelsea Fringe—the alternative garden show that will be sprouting up all over the posh neighborhood from 18 May to 9 June—be sure to pop by the tasteful design outlet Mint to check out their latest collection and exhibition, "When Things Bloom." The bountiful display is intended as a creative compliment to the famous Chelsea Flower Show that decorates the entire Kensington neighborhood in petals every May.

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Mint is not the only space celebrating the flowers this year. Several galleries and shops in the area, as well as the Victoria and Albert Museum, are feting the occasion with new spring-minded shows thanks to the efforts of the Brompton Design District (BDD). A neighborhood coalition made up of store owners, gallery owners and representatives of local cultural institutions, BDD aims to bring great design to the area by creating synergistic connections between local happenings and spaces, and this new botanical-inspired show is the group's latest iteration.

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Although not made up of tulips, peonies and daffodils, Mint's show embraces the season with a vibrant and unique arrangement of objects and furniture pieces. The refreshingly colorful collection includes exclusive pieces from artists like Swedish sculptor Hilda Hellstrom, whose Sedimentation vessels are inspired by the swirling rainbows hidden in ancient rock formations, and South Korean designer Soojin Kang, who has created sumptuous leather Lover's Stools rendered in pastel hides. While the freshness of spring permeates the entire collection, the Curator Cabinet from Studio Thier&VanDaalen really stands out.

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Hanging from four corners, the Curator Cabinet looks like an iridescent bubble framed in wood. The cabinet is comprised of a delicate ashwood cube that secures its six acrylic glass semi-sphere panels. Simple and clean, the piece brings to mind a contemporary re-imagination of bell jar displays and glass terrariums. Built to be a kind of cabinet of curiosities, the case can be filled with just about anything; be it a blooming bouquet of flowers or prized trinkets. Thanks to the cabinet's concealed shelf, the chosen object appears to float inside the bubble, creating a dreamlike center-piece. The cabinet can also be converted into a glowing light simply by placing a bulb inside. Totally interactive, the Curator Cabinet distinguishes itself in the way it intimately engages its audience.

Images courtesy of Mint

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