The first week I arrived in London, London Design Festival was on. Settling took a lot of my time, so I was not able too see that much of the festival.

The first thing I really wanted to visit was Charles Pétillon’s installation at Covent Garden. I read about it on Designmilk, Designboom and other design blogs. It looked amazing so I wanted to check it in the flesh. And were my expectations satisfied!

My earlier visits to Covent Garden were always a bit of a disappointment. This time however, Covent Garden exuded a really cosy vibe. It felt like I was in another world. The balloons made other people blur in the background.

Some words about the installation by Charles Pétillon himself:

‘The balloon invasions I create are metaphors. Their goal is to change the way in which we see the things alongside each day without really noticing them. With Heartbeat I wanted to represent the Market Building as the beating heart of this area connecting its past with the present day to allow visitors to re-examine its role at the heart of London’s life. Each balloon has its own dimensions and yet is part of a giant but fragile composition that creates a floating cloud above the energy of the market below. This fragility is represented by contrasting materials and also the whiteness of the balloons that move and pulse appearing as alive and vibrant as the area itself.’

- Charles Pétillon

Photograph by Valérie De Belder   ©

Photograph by Valérie De Belder ©