Space Popular is directed by Lara Lesmes and Fredrik Hellberg, both graduates from the Architectural Association in London (2011). They founded the practice in Bangkok (2013) and have been based in London since 2016. The studio has completed buildings, exhibitions, public artworks, furniture collections, and interiors across Asia and Europe, as well as virtual architecture in the Immersive Internet. Lesmes and Hellberg have taught architectural design studio since 2011, first at INDA, Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, and since 2016 at the Architectural Association in London. Their current MArch course investigates visions for civic architecture in the virtual realm.
Lesmes and Hellberg's digital fantasy was inspired by conversations with Dr Lindsay Dewa at Imperial College London. Dr Lindsay Dewa is working on a project on the importance of quality social connection for youth mental health, with particular interest in how this is facilitated in digital spaces. The fantasy artwork stemming from the conversation had by artists Lara and Fredrick with Dr Lindsay Dewa, focused on technology and understanding of technology and its impact on mental health, especially in young people.
"Societies are largely defined by their communication media and infrastructure and how they are used. The ways in which we talk to each other is about to radically change as we transition from flat to deep communication media. It will be more important than ever that we keep a human-centred focus in our augmented future." - Space Popular