David Michon.  Bio.  Work.  Contact.
 


Work.



The work I do is always about storytelling: whether placemaking strategy or advertisement. The aim is to listen, interpret and express the ambitions of the people I work with or write about.

“David, thank you for articulating so clearly what I am trying to do. I often think words in the right hands are worth a thousand pictures.” — John Pawson, architect

“David, I was delighted by your charmingly sensitive writing and your ability to stay on the right side of the line. You set the story up for its continuation.” 
— Mark Adams, Vitsoe


Services


Brand strategy or audits / Editorial direction & editing  / Benchmark tours / Tone of voice development / Placemaking strategy / Copywriting  / Journalism / Creative production / Podcast & film production / Moderating panel discussions & pubilc speaking / Workshops, audits and benchmark presentations in editorial content and structure (print & web), podcasting, city-building and place-making, architecture, design, retail, hospitality, transport


Selected clients


Peabody / London Craft Week / G . F Smith / One O One architects / Neue Zürcher Zeitung / Grosvenor Estate / Icon / The London Society / Tsz Shan Monastery / Ask Us For Ideas (AUFI) / Right Angle Studio / Waind Gohil + Potter Architects and others...


Writing


Monocle / L’Uomo Vogue / Vogue Italia / The Gourmand / Kinfolk / PIN-UP / Disegno / Icon / CanadianArt / uncube / Refinery29 / Above Sea Level / Kiosk / Hieronymous Journal


Selected work


Book: “Inspiration/Provocation”

— I edited a book for essays and interviews on the built environment for leading architecture, property and design PR company, ING – their first ever editorial publication. Contributors included musician and artist Brian Eno, legendary Berlin club owner Dimitri Hegemann, MoMA architecture and design curator Paola Antonelli, Lord Heseltine, FT sports columnist Simon Kuper, Cairo-based curator and writer Mohamed Elshahed, University of the Underground cofounder Dr Nelly Ben Hayoun and others. (Importantly, the book included no ING clients.) Graphic design was done by Lowrie

Retail and placemaking: Thamesmead regeneration

— For London’s oldest and most respected housing association, Peabody, I led the development of meanwhile use strategy for a 1.5-acre site at Thamesmead – Peabody’s largest regeneration project to date – as part of a team from placemaking agency, Mark London. The strategy focused on sustainable and socially-driven approaches to architecture and public space design, and a mix of operators driven by social and community enterprises. It pulled together local aspirations and global benchmarks in urban development. The site should be activated from 2020. 

Podcast: Thought Starters

— In collaboration with dn&co., I devised and produced a new podcast series called Thought Starters, putting interesting and thoughtful people from the creative industries in conversation. Guests have included leading graphic and type designers, set and spatial designers, technologists, architects, entrepreneurs, photo editors and journalists. Thought Starters is a placemaking project for White City Place, aimed to promote the site’s connected to broadcast (formerly home to the BBC), and as the home of a new high-spec studio space at White City Place designed by Allies & Morrison.

Brand development: Majid Al Futtaim, Dubai

— I developed the brand and placemaking strategy for the flagship neighbourhood development of the major UAE-based holdings company. The project also includes a brand audit of their property division, and development of a new messaging strategy.

Talk: UN-HABITAT

— As part of the 2014 Smart City World Congress in Barcelona, I was asked by UN-HABITAT to give a lecture on key drivers of quality of life, and on how journalists tell the story of urban transformation. Other speakers included leading UN experts, academics, editors, and members of Barcelona city council. 

Magazine: Icon 

— I was brought on as editor of Icon in 2015 to direct a relaunch of the magazine for its 150th issue, transforming Icon from a trade publication to one that reached a wider audience of design enthusiasts. As a result of my work, sales increased by 20 percent.

Magazine: The Journal of the London Society

— As part of the London Society’s ambitious restoration in 2014, I was given the task to rework its once-esteemed journal as editor. The biannual publication was repositioned from membership newsletter to a richly editorial and well-designed magazine, which now serves as an important marketing tool for the Society as a key member benefit.


Book: Tsz Shan Monastery

— Opened in 2015, just outside of Hong Kong, the Tsz Shan Monastery was built by the Li Ka Shing Foundation, with a mission to offer key lessons from Buddhist teachings to those struggling with the pressures and anxieties of urban life. I oversaw the editorial direction of a book to communicate Tsz Shan’s philosophy, and honour its inauguration.

Brand development: Citywise

— Genetec is a global security technology company that sees the connection between their work, and good city-building: their technology is only one actor in what must come together to create a safe, healthy city. I was part of the team that conceived and launched a platform to host this discussion: Citywise


Magazine: Monocle

— While at Monocle, I oversaw the launch of its 24-hour radio station, Monocle 24, managing a team that grew to over 30 people. I also produced Monocle 24’s weekly radio show on cities, The Urbanist. For the magazine, I co-edited supplements on Helsinki, Florence, Thailand and Ontario, and a chapter on cities for the Monocle Guide to Better Living. I have contributed several feature stories to the magazine, and continue to report for Monocle, the latest of which was on the origins and current mission of the architecturally astounding Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris.


Talks & moderating


The Sarabande Foundation / The Pilgrm hotel / UCL, Bartlett School of Architecture / UN-HABITAT / Arper / 100% Design / Icon House of Culture / Appear Here / LG / London Design Festival / Dubai Design Week / vPPR Architects with U+I / Surface Design Show / Club Zetter / Architect@Work / Clerkenwell Design Week / G . F Smith

Get in touch.