Happy New Year from London Craft Week!
As always, we are excited to celebrate and champion craftsmanship in all its forms. Over the past twelve months, it has been inspiring to see how the challenges of the pandemic have been a catalyst for creative development and new ideas. As 2022 begins, we hope that this spirit of innovation carries through in the year ahead.
Following our largest and most diverse edition of the festival to date in October last year, with nearly 400 events and over 350 makers from 31 countries taking part in LCW, we are looking forward to sharing with you the programme for the eighth edition of the festival, which will take place from 9–15 May 2022.
Last year also marked the second edition of Create Day, which took place on Saturday 4 September 2021. Featuring 24 hours of global content from more than 300 artists-designers-makers, over 190,000 visitors tuned in on the day for 1,700 hours of pure creativity.
For some of the highlights from 2021, and to discover the talent who took part last year, see below or visit our Makers page.
Creativity Across The Globe
Looking to learn a new skill this year? From revitalised heritage techniques to cutting-edge contemporary practices, meet talented makers from around the world in our selection of video highlights from Create Day 2021.
This film showcases the story of stone carver Zoë Wilson’s craft from start to finish. Designing and drawing on paper, sanding and cutting the stone, the highlight is the carving itself.
Discover how Turquoise Mountain works with master carpenter Maher from Syria to support regional craft enterprises, and train the next generation of artisan entrepreneurs.
Anita Porchet is the best-known enamel artist working in watches today. In this video from the Michelangelo Foundation, go behind the scenes in her workshop.
Meaning ‘joining with gold’, the centuries-old art of kintsugi is more than an aesthetic. Discover how, for the Japanese, it’s part of a broader philosophy embracing the beauty of flaws.
Watch how Riviere’s rugs are crafted in the Kathmandu valley of Nepal, made with age-old traditional techniques passed from generation to generation.
In this livestream, meet Conrad Hicks: an artist, blacksmith and tool-maker who specialises in hand-forged metal work, using only traditional blacksmithing jointing methods.
A Few Dates for Your Diary
Look ahead to brighter days with our pick of exhibitions and events to visit this year.
London Art Fair
Business Design Centre, 19–23 Jan
From prints and editions, to major works by renowned artists from the 20th century to today, London Art Fair returns this January at the Business Design Centre in Islington. Presenting over 100 selected galleries celebrating the best in modern and contemporary art, the fair provides expert insight through an inspiring programme of talks, tours and curated exhibitions.
Rescue Mission: which endangered crafts should we save?
Crafts magazine, Monday 24 January
Making traditions are an inherent part of our collective heritage, but as society and technology advances, some inevitably become at risk of dying out. Robin Wood, Katherine Huskie, Gareth Neal and Dima Srouji discuss what lessons traditional making practices can teach us for the future.
Grayson’s Art Club
Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, from 4 Dec
On show in Bristol, Grayson’s Art Club is a poignant chronicle of lockdown, featuring artworks chosen by Grayson Perry and guests during season two of the eponymous TV show. Forming an artistic record of the nation’s collective experience, it also reflects our creativity, imagination and talent.
Louise Bourgeois: The Woven Child
Hayward Gallery, from 9 Feb
From 9 February, visit the Hayward Gallery to see the first major retrospective of Louise Bourgeois that focuses exclusively on her work using fabrics and textiles. It will present a varied body of work incorporating textiles such as bed linen, handkerchiefs, tapestry and needlepoint.
Ai Weiwei: The Liberty of Doubt
Kettle’s Yard, from 12 Feb
Exploring notions of truth, authenticity and value, Ai Weiwei: The Liberty of Doubt will be the first time the artist has juxtaposed historic Chinese objects with his own work. Expect new artworks by Ai Weiwei shown alongside antiquarian pieces including some thought to date from the Northern Wei and Tang dynasties.
Somerset House, 25–27 Feb
Following a digital edition in 2021, Collect returns to Somerset House this February with some of the best collectible craft from around the world, presented by preeminent galleries including Sarah Myerscough, Cynthia Corbett, Ruup & Form, jaggedart, Cavaliero Finn, MADEINBRITALY and London Glassblowing.
Yukihiro Akama: Ki no ie
Yorkshire Sculpture Park, from 26 Feb
Working from a furniture maker’s workshop in Huddersfield where he is surrounded by the natural world, Japanese artist Yukihiro Akama creates intricate miniature wooden houses, each one carved from a single piece of wood.
Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear
V&A, from 19 March
This landmark exhibition promises to explore how designers, tailors and artists – and their clients and sitters – have constructed and performed masculinity.
Fondazione Giorgio Cini, 10 Apr–01 May
We’re eager to resume travelling this year, and are looking forward to visiting Venice for the 2022 edition of Homo Faber. The fair will be shining a light on the living treasures of Europe and Japan, with 15 exhibitions showcasing master artisans and exceptional objects curated by a team of world-class experts.
London Craft Week
London Craft Week returns to the capital for its eighth edition from 9–15 May 2022 with a programme of events celebrating exceptional creativity and craftsmanship from around the world. If you’d like to be involved, visit our website for more information about the festival and details of how to apply.
LOEWE Craft Prize
Seoul, Spring 2022
The fifth edition of the LOEWE FOUNDATION Craft Prize will take place in Seoul, bringing together a diverse array of objects that embody a commitment to experimentation and recognising artists whose talent, vision and innovation promise to set a new standard for the future.
M+, until 12 Nov
We were eagerly anticipating the opening of M+ last November, and have been excited to see their vibrant programme of exhibitions and commissions, including Sonic Rescue Ropes by Haegue Yang (pictured). If you plan to travel to Hong Kong this year, it’s well worth a visit.
5 Makers To Know For 2022
Clara Pinto is a London-based Argentinian designer who creates intricate textiles using experimental craft techniques. From her studio in Hackney, the Sarabande Foundation alumni specialises in made-to-order womenswear using organic and upcycled materials. Wool is a valued resource and each season the studio introduces new breeds which are transformed into innovative textiles using their signature non-traditional felting method, creating garments with irregular volumes and transparencies.
Combining exceptional natural materials with a slow-making ethic, Maria Sigma’s work champions ‘zero waste’ design. Taking inspiration from her Greek heritage, Maria creates minimal, contemporary textile artworks that reinterpret traditional craft techniques and styles. Sustainability is central to her practice and she uses exclusively natural undyed materials, while striving to decrease yarn waste and use of machinery, water and electric energy.
Bisila Noha seeks to challenge Western views on art and craft in her work, which is primarily wheel-thrown with the distinctive addition of marbled slip decoration. Strongly influenced by Japanese ceramics, she makes ‘simple’ pieces that are used as a canvas for abstract landscapes. Describing herself as an art activist, Bisila co-directs the arts and activism organisation Lon-art Creative and she is part of the team behind Design Can, an initiative to make the design industry more inclusive and diverse.
Alexander Yetman is a London based fashion designer reimagining traditional craftsmanship to create contemporary fine fashion that challenges gender stereotypes. Alexander has been creating bespoke evening wear and tailoring since 2018, combining delicate detailing with fluid fabrics and gender-neutral forms to produce garments that have been described by Lisa Armstrong, Head of Fashion at The Telegraph, as ‘elegance following purpose’.
Mary Wing To is a leather designer and harness maker who is revitalising the fine tradition of leather craftsmanship. After completing a degree in fashion design, Mary took a two-year saddlery course which gained her a QEST Leathersellers’ Company Scholarship to study with traditional whip maker Denis Walmsley. Mary is dedicated to preserving saddlery craftsmanship and practises the endangered craft of whip making. She has a deep appreciation for leather; sculpting, carving, dyeing and hand-stitching to create functional objects and sculptures.
Featured image from Sarah Myerscough Gallery, Outside In: Natural Materials in Contemporary Design and Art during LCW 2021, photo credit Dan Weill
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