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Craft Patronage at London Craft Week

Last week marked the fifth edition of London Craft Week, offering design-lovers a festival of makers and artisans and an action-packed programme of talks, workshops and screenings across London.

I was invited by curators of craft, The New Craftsmen, to take part in a panel discussion to debate how craft patronage is critical to the development of young makers.

Yelena Ford from The New Craftsmen presided over the discussion eloquently. It was fascinating to hear all the differing viewpoints.

The panellists included Charlotte Kingsnorth, a young artist and maker struggling to find patrons, Tord Boontje, a Tutor at Royal College of Art, who is very interested in the environment and new processes. Janice Blackburn is a feisty curator with many stories to tell, and I am someone who commissions art and craft in my home and hotels.

I am always looking for well-made pieces, original thought and talented artisans. The New Craftsmen showroom is a sympathetic environment to house these discussions and there is always something new and interesting to view. There were lots of questions and a good debate to mull over.

Charlotte’s new bronze furniture collection was beautifully showcased in the craft-focused space. She has an innovative and rebellious approach to both method and material. The pieces are formed from a pioneering lichen patina finish which was inspired by organic fungi found growing on a railing near her studio.

Several other artists’ works are on display alongside the bronze pieces, including Dawn Bendick’s cast glass forms that change colour depending on the light that hits them, and Tess Morley’s shell encrusted obelisks.

Make your way to The New Craftmen’s emporium in Mayfair to discover this unexpected mix of innovative and thought-provoking crafts. It is well worth the visit!

Processing Lichen And Other Matters, from 2nd May until 15th June,The New Craftsmen, 34 North Row, Mayfair, W1K 6DG

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