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    On Friday we once again headed west for our third annual Here symposium at the Royal Geographical Society. A stellar line-up of international creative talents treated us to a day of insight and inspiration, shot through with honesty and humility.

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    The dutch duo Lernert & Sander are well-known for their high-concept art films, installations, music videos and adverts and it’s the execution in all of their ideas that make them stand out from the rest.

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    Christoph Niemann’s super, bright yellow GIFs conflate war imagery with playtime. They seem to ask: What if all the world’s problems were solved through a Game of Thrones-esque trial by combat? Would it make things better, and solve political deadlock and endless years of military aggression?

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    Having been aware of Agi & Sam’s work for a few years now it’s fantastic to see they’ve not lost their edge and continue to out do themselves. Agi Mdumulla and Sam Cotton’s AW14 collection is one of their most successful to date showing real growth and maturity, yet still retaining the pair’s playful spirit.

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    With the help of the imaginative mind of Marion Deuchars, it is possible to transform any smudge of a finger print into a fiery fox or an adorable piglet. The British-based illustrator and author proves that you’re never too old for playing with paint, and she transforms her inky illustrations into drawing games and craft-based activities that are leagues better than any old episode of Art Attack.

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    Anyone familiar with Ewen Spencer’s photography knows he has an unparalleled knack for capturing youth culture at its most honest. Over the past 20 years, Ewen’s work has gained recognition from some of the most prestigious of institutions and continues to make comment on subcultures, fashion and music.

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    Going through renowned graphic designer, Mirko Borsche’s portfolio is like when you decide to clear out your bedroom. Instead of an efficient tidy-up and throw-out, you spend hours pouring over every object, photo, book, handwritten note you own. The sheer volume of work Mirko has produced over the years is incredible, mostly because the standard is so high, I just hope some of his creativity seeps into my eyes while I view his work.

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    Sam Jacob is one of the leading figures in the architecture and design industries. He’s a founding director of FAT Architecture, and is responsible for a range of internationally acclaimed projects, including designs for Igloo, Selfridges and the BBC. As well as practicing architecture, Sam is a true authority on all things design, being a columnist for Dezeen, a critic for Art Review, Professor of Architecture at UIC, and a Visiting Professor at Yale School of Architecture. Between juggling all of his prestigious roles, Sam finds the time to write a fantastic blog called Strange Harvest, which is definitely well worth a look at.

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    Undeniably The Gentlewoman has re-defined what a woman’s fashion magazine can be by having a real opinion about the world around us. It’s all thanks to editor-in-chief Penny Martin, whose focus and clear vision has steered this biannual away from mainstream trends and explored personal style and inspiring women instead.

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    Eric Yahnker is one of our absolute favourite artists working today. His humorous, meticulously rendered graphic puns wittily examine contemporary pop culture and politics, and his work is stunningly executed as well as being astute and thought-provoking. We’ve written about his exhilarating art before, and recently we reviewed his very excellent first London exhibition, Sticks & Drones at Paradise Row.

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    Marina Willer’s designs are incredibly iconic, and it’s kind of unbelievable when you realise that she’s the brains behind a huge array of outstanding brand identities, as well as being a very talented filmmaker, and the first female partner at Pentagram. Marina has worked with the likes of The Tate, The Southbank Centre and The Serpentine Gallery, and has also created memorable logos for Oxfam and Macmillian Cancer Support. We wrote about her incredible new Serpentine identity last year, which strikingly demonstrates the incredible things that she is capable of.

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    We are delighted to announce that our keynote speaker for Here 2014 is the wonderful illustrator, graphic artist, and author Christoph Niemann.

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    British designers Agi Mdumulla and Sam Cotton are one of the biggest success stories of the London menswear scene in recent years. Believing fashion should never be taken too seriously, their beautifully vibrant collections combine bespoke print patterns and a quintessentially British sense of humour with tailored, accessible shapes.

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    As editor-in-chief of The Gentlewoman, Penny Martin is a publishing world powerhouse. Having studied 1980s fashion magazines at the Royal College of Art and a stint as professor of fashion imagery at the London College of Fashion, she was ideally placed to head up the editorial team at Nick Knight’s SHOWstudio before taking over Gert Jonkers’ and Jop van Bennekom’s female answer to Fantastic Man.

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    Award-winning Dutch duo Lernert Engelberts and Sander Plug create high-concept art films, music videos, installations and adverts driven by a combination of terrific ideas, faultless execution and a subtly dry, cheeky sense of humour. They’ve made remarkable films for editorial heavyweights like Fantastic Man and Nowness, created eye-catching installations for the windows at Selfridges, directed commercials for Amnesty International and have a superb portfolio of personal work.

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    When it comes to marking out influential figures in the contemporary architecture and design industries, we’d have a hard time thinking of a more accomplished innovator than Sam Jacob. As one of the founding directors of FAT Architecture he is responsible for a range of internationally acclaimed projects, cementing FAT’s place as one of the world’s leading post-modern architecture studios. His portfolio includes award winning work for BBC, Igloo, Urban Splash and Selfridges, with many of his projects exhibited at leading galleries and museums including the Victoria & Albert Museum, the MAK in Vienna and the Venice Architecture Biennale. After many years of incredible collaborative work, Sam and his partners Charles Holland and Sean Griffiths announced last year that FAT would close this summer.

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    We are thrilled that this year’s Here London creative symposium will feature legendary British illustrator and author Marion Deuchars, a lady who in addition to working internationally with major design and advertising agencies, also publishes beautiful illustrated children’s books and has created a globally recognised style of hand lettering!

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    As promised, we’ll be posting a profile each week telling you a bit more about each of our amazing Here 2014 speakers, and next up is one of the UK’s hippest documentarians Ewen Spencer.

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    This year’s Here London line up is an absolute corker, so in anticipation of the big day we’ll be posting regular profiles about each of our amazing speakers!

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    Here London is returning to the beautiful settings of the Royal Geographical Society on Friday 13 June 2014! The one-day symposium will once again bring together a vast array of the most exciting creative talent from the UK and abroad for inspirational talks exploring process and ideas across the art and design world.



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    Ok everyone calendars out, because have we got a date for you to save. Friday 13 June to be specific, when our Here conference returns to the magnificent Royal Geographical Society in London. Tickets will go on sale on Tuesday February 4 which is also when we’ll be revealing some of the amazing creative talents we have confirmed to speak at our flagship event. You can follow Here on Twitter and find us on Facebook. You can (and should!) also sign up to our dedicated Here newsletter to get all the updates delivered direct to your inbox; you can sign up at the Here website.