A Celebration of Craft
May has become the month to celebrate craft in the UK. Our very own (and very marvellous) Select Festival is a firm fixture in the Five Valleys (www.sitselect.org/sitselectevents) and Collect at the Saatchi Gallery has long been a reason to visit London (www.craftscouncil.org.uk/what-we-do/collect), but now the capital is playing host to London Craft Week; a five day celebratory making fest running from 6th – 10th May.
Designed to become an annual event, London Craft Week is independent, not-for-profit and supported by founding partner Vacheron Constantin and strategic partners Arts Council England, as well as the Mayor of London, the Crafts Council, Walpole and the Heritage Crafts Association. Its aim is to introduce the talent, people and techniques behind beautifully made things to a wider audience by enabling them to experience craft, not just as static branded objects in smart shops, but through an exciting programme of exhibitions, workshops and discussions.
At the heart of all this activity is The Crafted City at Contemporary Applied Arts. Designed to be a demonstration of the excellence in craftsmanship in the UK, The Crafted City is set in an innovative, purpose-built pavilion behind the gallery itself. It will host a showcase of specially commissioned work by leading CAA makers, including ceramicist Daphne Carnegy, glass artists Stewart Hearn and Michael Ruh and printed textile designer Michelle House, as well as offering a flexible space for audiences to meet, talk, learn about and explore craft through a programme of workshops, master classes and discussions.
As passionate supporters of the applied arts, SITselect would be excited about such a full on celebration of creativity wherever it took place, but we are particularly thrilled that CAA is playing such a central role. The gallery is a key stockist of our journal, Selected, and sales there have been so brisk that we have recently made an informal alliance - two like-minded bodies working together to promote the art of making. The current issue of Selected (available from the gallery or via www.sitselect.org/journal), profiles CAA makers Natasha Kerr and Wycliffe Stutchbury and one of the makers showing at our stand at Clerkenwell Design Week is CAA ceramicist Billy Lloyd. (www.clerkenwelldesignweek.com/cdw-additions/sitselect/) Expect to see more in future issues.
Below is a list of public events at The Crafted City. For more information about what else is going on during London Craft Week go to www.londoncraftweek.com/programme
Lunchtime Demonstrations and Meet the Maker Sessions
Thursday 7 May – Sunday 10 May (free/no booking required)
Public Drop-in Workshop
Printing with Joanna Veevers. Sunday, 10 May, 2-4pm (free/no booking required)
Master Classes at the gallery
Silver, gold and fine metalwork: From idea to object – Adi Toch. Saturday, 9 May (booking essential)
Nature, woodland and fine furniture – Angus Ross. Sunday, 10 May (booking essential)
For details and booking information please visit www.caa.org.uk
Pavilion opening times: Thursday 7 May – Sunday 10 May 10am-4.30pm Admission free
Contemporary Applied Arts, 89 Southwark Street, London SE1. 020 7620 0086 - www.caa.org.uk/exhibitions/archive/2015/london-craft-week/
Daphne Carnegy - Tile design Owl