CRAFT | in season
This season's Craft Exhibition runs in programme with The Platform Graduate Award 2020, opening on Friday 18 September.
CRAFT | in season
The Crafts Council host a development programme of creative and business support for makers at the start of their career, titled Hothouse. Set up in 2011, it offers a six month programme designed to help makers cultivate their creativity and develop their business know-how with equal measure.
26 makers were selected and were given the opportunity to travel across the UK completing a series of workshops including finance, self-presentation, marketing, business growth and creative thinking, with the added bonus of mentorship and 1:1 support.
We have selected four of those makers to showcase work in our Craft Space.
Marie Jones (Kochi Kochi)
Iris De La Torre
Marie Jones (Kochi Kochi)
Marie Jones is a North West UK based Artist, graduating from Liverpool School of Art (2006) and Manchester School of Art (2015). With a background in Graphic Arts and lecturing in higher education, Marie combines this with skills learnt from a large family of makers to create a practice that sits at the intersection of Art, Craft and Design.
With enthusiasm for surprises, Marie Jones was inspired to adopt ‘Kochi Kochi’ as her moniker and motive for her ideas led contemporary art practice. It translates from Japanese slang as a polite way of saying ‘Come over here and have a look at this!’. Often led by curiosity and humour, her practice recontextualises traditional domestic craft techniques to create unique woollen sculptures, hangings and artworks. She uses scale and vivid colours to augment and communicate these curious narratives through her work.
2019 was a significant year for Marie, with her inaugural solo show, Let’s Get Stuck in Traffic! as part of the Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival at the towns Museum & Gallery - commissioned as 1 of 52 artists for the year long project itv Creates and she organised and curated the annual international group exhibition and residency, Ride Your Pony for the third year. As well as being selected for the Crafts Council Hothouse programme she was shortlisted for the 2019 Jerwood Makers Open. With 7 other artists from the North West, Jones went on an Artists’ International Delegation to Denmark as part of an ongoing partnership programme between Manchester based Castlefield Gallery & a-n in September.
Charlotte Kidger is a London based maker, graduating from Leeds College of Art (2014) and Central Saint Martins (2018). Her practice is led with a hands-on approach to investigating how industrial waste materials can be reprocessed and transformed into sculptural and functional objects.Self-titled as an experimental material-lead designer whose work is driven by the urge and curiosity to transform often unwanted and valueless materials into desirable and functional objects.
Since graduating from her MA in Material Futures in 2018, Charlotte became a finalist in the HIX Art Award and Designblok Prague, Diploma Selection: Product Design, where her work was recognised for utilising and repurposing waste materials. Her first group show in 2019, Re.Use, Re.Think, Re.Imagine at Hauser & Wirth Somerset, provided a platform to show practices that explored unique responses to materials and processes. Her work was also selected for Design Transfigured/ Waste Reimagined at Georgetown University Art Galleries in 2019 which also focused on material and process specifically related to waste and up cycling. Then came her selection for the Crafts Council Hothouse Programme.
She has simultaneously been commissioned by clients including Selfridges,Converse, Adidas, 2LG and Red Deer.
Iris De La Torre
Born in the city of Guadalajara, Mexico and surrounded by the country’s rich history, vast arts and incredible culture, Iris De La Torre was drawn by the beauty, the vibrant colours and the ingenuity of Mexican traditional folk arts and crafts to pursue a creative career.
After completing a BA in Jewellery Design at The Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design in 2003, followed by an MA in Jewellery in 2010 at Central Saint Martins, Iris started to explore acrylic and rubber materials and began translating her 1960s inspired graphics combined with inspiration from her Mexican heritage into playful jewellery.
Working mainly with Perspex which is 100 percent recyclable and consciously, to keep waste at a minimum, jewellery materials are sourced, laser cut and digitally printed by suppliers in London and then meticulously assembled by hand, taking on average, two hours to finish each piece.
Iris was commissioned by the V&A Museum in 2018 to design a collection of jewellery for their landmark exhibition “Frida Kahlo: Making Herself Up”. In addition, she was commissioned once again by the V&A Museum in 2019 to create another exclusive collection of brooches to celebrate one of the most important romances in history: Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s love story. This collection coincided with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert Bicentenary in 2019.
Dalia James is a woven textile designer and hand-weaver working from a studio located in the heart of east London’s creative district.
Graduating in 2012 from Loughborough University with a degree in Woven Textiles, coupled with a background in Arts administration, Dalia decided to focus more of her time on her own practice in 2018. She was selected for the Crafts Council Hothouse programme in 2019 and showcased her work at New Designers ‘One Year In’ in June of that year, during which she was mentioned in an article in the Evening Standard titled ‘Styling Our Future’ about emerging makers and the resurgence of weaving.
Her profound affinity to the teachings of the Bauhaus and other early 20th Century design and artistic movements and philosophies are often referenced in her work - using simple geometric forms to explore how colours interact with each other resulting in bold, playful and contemporary designed pieces. Fascinated by process and experimentation, Dalia often incorporates other disciplines into her design process - using printmaking, drawing and collage as a starting point when creating designs used to produce retail products as well as art pieces.